Mercedes happy to work with Albon as long as Red Bull releases him

Toto Wolff says Mercedes would be happy to work with Alex Albon at customer team Williams next year if Red Bull releases him from its Formula 1 contract.

Mercedes happy to work with Albon as long as Red Bull releases him

Albon is angling to make an F1 comeback next year, having dropped off the grid when he was dropped by Red Bull into a reserve role at the end of the 2020 season.

Both Williams and Alfa Romeo have expressed an interest in signing Albon for next year, while Mercedes Formula E driver Nyck de Vries has also been linked to both teams.

Red Bull F1 boss Christian Horner said on Friday that Albon's preference was to join Williams, but that he feared Mercedes would block the move because of its ties to its customer squad.

Asked by Motorsport.com on Saturday how much of an issue it would be for a Red Bull-linked driver to race with a Mercedes power unit next year, Mercedes boss Wolff acknowledged it would be "tricky".

"It's one thing about the power unit, and I think with Albon, as I said yesterday, he's a driver that deserves his seat in Formula 1," Wolff said.

"But it's tricky to have a 100% Red Bull driver on a Mercedes power unit. So, [we are] happy to work with him, as long as they let him free from his Red Bull contract.

"And on the other side, we are supporting Nyck de Vries, obviously, and he is in talks with Williams to get the seat there. So there's quite some balls in the air."

Read Also:

Horner claimed on Friday that Albon had received "about four phone calls telling him not to go there from the team next door", but Wolff denied Mercedes had tried to dissuade the Anglo-Thai driver from a Williams switch.

"Alex Albon is in regular contact with an ex-mentor of mine, Gwen Lagrue, who is running our Mercedes junior programme," Wolff said.

"They were discussing with James Vowles, our head of strategy, the opportunities for next year.

"I don't think he was told to do or not do anything, it was just exploring the opportunities for Alex and for Nyck in an amicable way, between Alex and the group."

shares
comments
Alonso: Strategy "surprises" could deliver Dutch GP excitement

Previous article

Alonso: Strategy "surprises" could deliver Dutch GP excitement

Next article

The decade-long wait for a Dutch hero's F1 comeback

The decade-long wait for a Dutch hero's F1 comeback
Load comments
The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Prime

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery Prime

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi...

Formula 1
Sep 24, 2021
Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1 Prime

Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Prime

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. Damien Smith brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1.

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Prime

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus Prime

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Prime

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021