When news about George Russel's transfer to Mercedes-AMG F1 was revealed, Williams Racing was faced with a problem. With only Nicholas Latifi set to drive one of their cars next season, they were one driver short.
Luckily, they were able to find a suitable replacement for Russel. After fulfilling his role as a reserve and test driver for Red Bull Racing, Williams Racing has officially announced that they have successfully recruited Alex Albon to race next year. With it, Latifi and Albon will form the team's driver lineup for the 2022 Formula 1 One World Championship.
“It is fantastic to be able to confirm our driver line-up for 2022 and I am delighted to be welcoming Alex to the team, along with confirming our continued relationship with Nicholas into next year. We are extremely excited by our new line-up, with both drivers bringing a great blend of youth and experience that will not only be a great fit for the team but also help us take the next step in our journey,” said Jost Capito, CEO of Williams Racing.
The Thai-British racing driver, who first made his F1 debut in 2019 with Toro Rosso, has a stellar record in the junior categories. This includes multiple wins in the GP3 Series and Formula Two Championship.
“I am really excited and looking forward to returning to a Formula One race seat in 2022. When you take a year out of F1 it’s never certain you will make a return so I’m extremely thankful to Red Bull and Williams for believing in me and helping me on my journey back to the grid. It’s also been great to see all the progress Williams has been making as a team this year and I look forward to helping them continue that journey in 2022,” said Albon.
As for Latifi, he's excited to continue driving for Williams as the new F1 technical regulations come into effect starting next year.
“I’m excited to be continuing with Williams for another year; partly because of F1's new technical regulations, but also because the team is moving in a more competitive direction with new owners, management, and people on the technical side. I’ve felt at home here since the day I arrived, and I think I’m in the right place to continue with my positive trajectory. The aim is to continue making little improvements so we can all take advantage of the opportunity we have next year,” added Latifi.
This is the fourth consecutive season Latifi has driven for Williams Racing. Meanwhile, this is Albon's return to the F1 grid after a race-winning campaign in the DTM.