REPORT: Issues hamper progress at season opener

Published on
02 Mar 2024
Est. reading time
3 Min

Alex Albon finished P15 with Logan Sargeant in P20 at the 2024 Bahrain Grand Prix

The 2024 Formula 1 season is underway and the team are reflecting on a tough evening at the Bahrain International Circuit, with neither driver able to make progress during the 57-lap race.
Alex Albon and Logan Sargeant had initially enjoyed a strong start, with Albono up to P11 and Sarge up to P15 at the end of the opening tour.
Logan gained another place as he sailed around Daniel Ricciardo at T4 on the second lap, taking P14 from the RB driver.
As they began to settle into their opening stints, Alex and Logan started to manage Power Unit (PU) temperatures as they sat firmly within a DRS train.
Logan’s evening would take an unfortunate turn on Lap 10 when a steering wheel issue sent him deep at T4 – he kept the car running but by the time he was serviced in the pits with new tyres and a new wheel, he was a lap down.
Alex extended his opening stint longer than most, eventually pulling in from P3 on Lap 15 and returning to the circuit in P15.
He wasted no time climbing back up the order, taking P14 away from the Alpine of Esteban Ocon at T4 before setting his sights on Kevin Magnussen.
However, the high PU temperatures made attacking the Haas tough, with Albono frequently forced to pull off of the racing line in an attempt to cool his car.
Alex would pit once more and Logan twice, but the pair would have a quiet second half to proceedings, coming home an eventual P15 and P20.
How we finished in Bahrain.
“We were dealing with issues on both cars from very early in the race and never really gave either driver an opportunity to push hard,” shared Head of Vehicle Performance, Dave Robson.
“In close traffic, we were running the PUs at their temperature limits and we had to manage this carefully.
“Logan suffered with another electronic issue, which caused him to flat-spot his tyres and led to him changing the steering wheel at the pit stop.
“There are clearly issues that we need to rectify fully before next Saturday when we race in Jeddah.
“As we saw yesterday, the midfield is very tight and had we done a better job today, there was an opportunity to race for points.
“Fortunately, we have a chance to come back straight away, resolve the issues and race better in Saudi Arabia.”
Find out your results
See how you fared against other fans in the latest round of Pit Wall Predictions, presented by Gulf.
Alex is keen to take the learnings from a tough evening and help us improve in Saudi Arabia next week, sharing: “The car itself was okay but we’re far behind. We had issues the whole race with things that if we had done more running in testing, we would’ve been able to avoid.
“We were overheating the entire race and were down on power, so hopefully we can take a look at the data and arrive in Jeddah in better shape.
“Our pace relative to the others is quite similar so that midfield battle is close and will be tough.”
After his Lap 10 issue, it was a lonely evening for Logan on track, but he was keen to take the positives from the opening round.
“It was frustrating as we had the steering wheel electronics issue yesterday in Qualifying and then it returned today,” Sarge commented, adding: “The most important thing is that we need to understand the root cause of this and get it fixed going forward.
“We had a really good first lap and a great opening stint and made some good gains and it felt like it was coming to me before we had the issue.
“We were struggling a little with PU temp which meant I couldn’t stay close to the cars ahead, so it was just a bit of a disappointing evening.
“There’s nothing we can’t fix, but we need to understand everything moving forward.”
Contact & Media
Store Location
Stay in the Loop
Powered By
© the Williams Group, under licence to Williams IP Holdings LLC
Williams Grand Prix Engineering Limited is a company registered in England and Wales under company number 1297497. Its registered office is at Grove, Wantage, Oxfordshire, OX12 0DQ
Powered By