Skip to main content

F1’s Alex Albon compares driving Max Verstappen’s car to playing Call of Duty on highest sensitivity

Williams driver gives some insight into time with Red Bull
  • Author:
  • Publish date:

Alexander Albon, who is currently a Formula 1 driver for the iconic Williams F1 Team, drove for Red Bull Racing in the 2020 Season alongside two-time world champion Max Verstappen – the racing fanatic with a simulator on his private jet, who does sim racing on the side and is now an official EA Sports partner.

Writing on the The Players’ Tribune, Albon gave some insight on how it was to be Verstappen’s team mate at Red Bull, an organization that at the time was already centered around making the Dutchman, who is considered a once-in-a-generation prodigy when it comes to racing, a future world champion.

In Formula 1 such a focus meant that the team was developing and fine-tuning the car according to Verstappen’s feedback and driving style, which led to a high frustration rate among his colleagues.

Albon used a comparison that gamers will understand better than anyone else: “I mean there was so much nose on the thing that if you blew on the wheel the car would turn. If you play Call of Duty, or a game like that, turn your sensitivity up to the highest it will go. That’s what it’s like to drive that car.”

Alex Albon, Williams F1 driver.

Alexander Albon is currently driving for the Williams F1 Team.

Albon knows what he’s talking about, as he’s a member of F1’s notorious Twitch squad – a group of young drivers who had taken up the habit of streaming video games on Twitch when Covid-19 forced the F1 circus to a halt.

He’s not angry about his team’s focus on Verstappen, who he’s good friends with, despite how things turned out: “And like I said, I completely understand why. Max was, at the time, a future world champion. It was clear for all to see. So, of course, you’re going to build your car how he likes.”

As he was unable to cope with the car, having a few big crashes and a general lack of strong results, Albon’s seat went to experienced Mexican driver Sergio Pérez with Albon being put on test duty – essentially, he pulled all-nighters in the sim during Grand Prix weekends to test different set-ups for the cars. He did extremely well in this role, gaining public shoutouts from Verstappen and staff members several times.

For the 2022 Season, he joined Williams, for which he’ll also race in 2023 – there, Albon is the leading driver in the team and will control how much “sensitivity” will be needed to steer it.