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Albon frustrated not to score points after ‘tough’ race in Saudi Arabia amid clash with Magnussen

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JEDDAH, SAUDI ARABIA - MARCH 08: 12th placed qualifier Alexander Albon of Thailand and Williams

Alex Albon was disappointed to leave the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix with no points after an eventful race, with the Williams driver having found himself in a tight battle with several cars in the midfield as well as being involved in a clash with Kevin Magnussen.

Albon started from P12 on the grid and enjoyed an early scrap with Magnussen and Esteban Ocon. Magnussen was later handed a 10-second time penalty for causing a collision with Albon after making contact during the fight, a moment that left Albon with damage to his front wing end plate.

READ MORE: Verstappen seals assured victory in Saudi Arabian Grand Prix as Bearman scores points on debut

As the race wore on, Albon ended up in a queue of cars that had formed behind Magnussen in P12, the Haas driver playing his part in a strategy to help team mate Nico Hulkenberg build a gap up ahead by backing up those behind him.

A frustrated Albon eventually managed to overtake Yuki Tsunoda in the pack to claim P14 before ultimately working his way up to P11 by the chequered flag, just missing out on a points-paying position.

Albon: ‘We had a better race car than we showed today’

Asked about the battle in the midfield, Albon responded: “I wouldn’t call it the midfield, we were fighting at the back! We didn’t score any points, so it was a bit frustrating.

“We didn’t really have the straight-line speed, had front wing damage as well, so it was tough. But I think we had a better race-fit car than it showed today. A bit frustrating but we’ll focus for Australia.”

HIGHLIGHTS: Watch the action from the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix as Verstappen takes the win and Bearman shines

The Thai driver was magnanimous about his earlier clash with Magnussen, simply saying of the incident: “It happens.”

On the other side of the Williams garage, Logan Sargeant was also involved in the same multi-car scrap as his team mate, having gained some positions after starting the race from P19. However, the American struggled more in the latter stages of the event and came home in P14.

Sargeant ‘struggled to find the potential’ of his Williams in latter stages in Jeddah

“I don’t think it was too bad,” Sargeant reflected after the race. “A good first 35 laps, a good start. I think I just struggled to find the potential at the end, the last 12 to 15 laps or so. So yeah, little bits to go through there at the end.

"I think I was starting to explore that potential but it just took too long to realise that it was there, and I think without that we probably could have picked a couple more off. But it is what it is, a few bits to learn from the end but all in all not too bad.”

FACTS AND STATS: Bearman makes it four Brits in the points for the first time since 1968

In terms of the key learnings he will take from the weekend in Jeddah ahead of the next race on the calendar, the Australian Grand Prix, Sargeant noted the similarities between the two.

“I think Australia’s generally a similar race – one stop, the pace is improving though the race,” he explained. “I need to make sure I can understand what’s left in the car and maximise that potential towards the end.”

Williams are one of four teams yet to get off the mark in 2024, along with Kick Sauber, Alpine and RB.

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