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Will Alexander Albon's Red Bull journey continue?

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Roar Rookie
6th November, 2020
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Alexander Albon was roped into the Red Bull Racing Team with high expectations after a disappointing run for his predecessor Pierre Gasly.

But has Albon performed well enough to retain his F1 seat in 2021?

So far Albon has failed to live up to the expectations in his Red Bull cockpit, having only scored 64 points so far and placing a not-so-pleasing ninth place in the drivers’ championship.

He is clearly not 100 per cent sure of retaining his seat in 2021. With Red Bull trying to challenge the dominant Silver Arrows of Mercedes for the constructors’ championship, it has so far been a one-way chase for Red Bull with Max Verstappen.

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has said that they want to extend the deadline for Alex Albon until the season finale in Abu Dhabi.

Toro Rosso driver Alex Albon prepares for preseason testing.

(Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

There are drivers like Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez knocking the door for Red Bull’s second driver slot. Albon clearly has a lot more to prove with four races remaining.

Max Verstappen has also stated that he wants Hulkenberg alongside him in the Red Bull cockpit. To take the challenge closer to Mercedes, they need a driver who can challenge Max Verstappen, just like how Daniel Ricciardo did in the past before his Red Bull exit.

Since the exit of Ricciardo, Red Bull haven’t found who their second driver should be. If he fails in the Red Bull, will Albon’s F1 journey continue?

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With Gasly remaining in Alpha Tauri, and with Christian Horner stating that there will be an exciting driver alongside Gasly, this indicates Yuki Tsunoda will have his first F1 drive in 2021 with Alpha Tauri.

So, where will Albon go if he is replaced? There are only few spots left in the grid. The most possible place for Albon looks like the Haas F1 team.

These are teams for 2021 F1 season.

Mercedes: Valtteri Bottas, TBC
Red Bull: Max Verstappen, TBC
Alpine (Renault): Fernando Alonso, Esteban Ocon
McLaren: Lando Norris, Daniel Ricciardo
Aston Martin (Racing Point): Sebastian Vettel, Lance Stroll
Ferrari: Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz Jr.
Alpha Tauri: Pierre Gasly, TBC
Alfa Romeo: Kimi Raikkonen, Antonio Giovinazzi
Haas: TBC, TBC
Williams: George Russell, Nicholas Latifi

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It is more likely that Mercedes will sign a contract with Lewis Hamilton. Their driver set-up is pretty complete, and having wrapped up the constructors’ championship, they pretty much do not want to change their team.

The next team is Red Bull, which I’ve talked about, and they are still not sure about their drivers. My prediction is that Hulkenberg could possibly be driving alongside Max Verstappen.

With Albon under-performing it is unlikely that Albon will remain at Red Bull. Hulkenberg has had a couple of amazing sub races in this season. So it would be him.

The other team with an empty seat is Red Bull’s sister team Alpha Tauri. With the team confirming Gasly will remain in his Alpha Tauri, young prodigy Tsunoda is about to get his F1 super licence. He is probably going to make his debut for the Alpha Tauri team in 2021.

The last team to have open slots in Haas. Formula Two drivers Mick Schumacher and Callum Ilott will make the cut for Formula One. They are comfortably placed one and two in the Formula Two drivers’ championship respectively.

Could Albon retain his seat? Or will he be replaced?

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