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Albon Eyes 2026 Williams F1 Targets Repeat Triumph

Albon Predicts: Williams F1 to Mirror 2014’s Victory in 2026

23/06/2024

Alexander Albon is set on 2026, as Williams F1 and their engine partner aim to recreate their 2014 glory.

If Alexander Albon has extended his stay at Williams F1, despite his high standing in the paddock, and if Carlos Sainz is also considering setting up camp at Grove, it is also (and perhaps mainly?) because Williams can count on a Mercedes power unit in 2026.

2026 will see the implementation of the new engine regulations, and the German manufacturer might be best positioned to perform well from the start. Comparison is not reason, but let’s remember that in 2014, with the last major engine regulation overhaul, Mercedes F1 had dominated the competition…

Toto Wolff has indeed been making optimistic statements about the 2026 regulations (even if it’s also to try and attract Max Verstappen!)

“Engines will play a big role in 2026,” confirmed Alexander Albon, who is therefore looking to the medium term.

Albon thinks Mercedes F1 might dominate in 2026, but that would also necessarily be a good sign for Williams F1’s competitiveness…

“Maybe in 2026 we will be further behind a leading team like Mercedes, with a bigger gap to first place.”

“I hope Mercedes will have a powerful engine and good battery efficiency.”

“This could work in our favour in the constructors’ standings, and make us relatively competitive compared to other teams equipped with different engines.”

In 2026, chassis performance will of course account for a large part of the performance: and that’s why James Vowles continues his restructuring of the team.

This restructuring should bear fruit in 2026 for Alexander Albon… or at least partly, as the stars will not yet all be aligned for Grove in two years, given the work that remains to be done.

“We are still in a building phase and I don’t think we will be fully ready in 2026,” continues Alexander Albon.

“Every team says it, 2026 is a new start for everyone, but I think it will take a bit more time for us.”

“But I hope our power unit can give us a very good momentum. And I do remember a bit of 2014 – the gap with the best cars, at the front, could be bigger.”

“But this situation would put us in a good position – and we can still build and develop and continue to transform the team from there. And then we could make bigger steps forward in 2027.”

Alexander Albon thus sends a clear message to James Vowles: it’s better to sacrifice 2025 for the sake of 2026. To prioritize the medium term over the short term.

“I would prefer to sacrifice 2025 for 2026 – and it’s partly because of the longer-term contracts, we’re not as focused on the short term.”

“You don’t want short-term success if it’s going to cause you pain later, and as a team, we need to think more about the future if we want to be on top.”

“We still have a lot to do and these are big changes that will take time.”

Williams F1, a matter of weight…

Is Alexander Albon therefore ready to be patient – for 18 long months…?

For him, Williams F1 will find a good amount of lap time, provided his car returns to the minimum allowable weight…

“In terms of development, it’s still important [what we can do in 2024] because the regulations don’t change next year, so whatever you gain this year, you carry it over to next year.”

“The most important thing for us as a team is to make sure we meet our weight reduction goals, that would be our biggest step forward. If we can get the basics right at that level, we’re going to make a big step forward as a team for next year.”

“We have developments coming that also bring performance but I would say the carrot right now is more oriented towards the weight of the car, rather than its aerodynamics.”

“We compare the two and also see financially what makes sense. Losing weight is not cheap.”

Albon Predicts Williams F1 to Mirror 2014's Victory in 2026

Albon Eyes 2026 Williams F1 Targets Repeat Triumph. Albon Eyes 2026 Williams F1 Targets Repeat Triumph

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