Unfortunately, Alex Albon had a poor qualifying and didn't reach the final segment of qualifying. He'll be starting in 12th place around a sub-minute circuit with very few corners.
The Thai driver was slower by 0.379s than team-mate Max Verstappen in Q2; that wasn’t the best way to make an impression on the Red Bull team that is giving him the chance to prove his worth until the last race of the season in Abu Dhabi.
Albon was happy with his attempt and just wanted to understand where it went wrong. He felt like the car was completely different to FP3.
"Honestly with my lap I was quite happy," Alex insisted. "I didn't really get a slipstream, and on my second one, it was just a bit of a mess in the final sector so my tires were cold.
"It just felt very different from FP3," Albon said. "We were trying to save some tires for qualifying and we were on mediums in FP3 and the car felt completely different."
“So I need to understand where it went wrong, just very different to FP3 was the car.
“Tricky out there, obviously slipstreaming was really important as well.”
However, Albon believes he still has a chance to make up lost ground in the race itself.
"There's a lot of places to overtake. At the same time it will probably be a DRS chain," he suggested.
"We'll have to stay open. I think we're running a bit more downforce than most of the competitors. On one point it might be hard to overtake but on the other side hopefully, we can look after our tires a bit better."
“It’s very much a Red Bull seat or a year on the bench. So the focus is on giving him that opportunity,” Horner told reporters in Bahrain when speaking about Albon’s future before Free Practice 2.
“He’s got two races, he did a good job last weekend, being on the podium, his second podium in F1.
“He’s had a good first practice, a good start to the weekend here, and two more weekends to demonstrate that he is absolutely the right guy to be in that car alongside Max [Verstappen] next year.
“And we’re giving him all the support that we possibly can to achieve that goal.”