“But let’s see tomorrow. I think the car’s feeling good. The [race] pace on Friday wasn’t as good, we had a bit of degradation.
“We’ve been chipping away at it, because since FP1, the car’s actually been focused a bit more towards the race car than the qualifying car.
“We knew this track was going to suit us, but we need to use these weekends to pull further ahead in the Constructors’, so let’s see what we can do tomorrow.”
While Monza rewards the low downforce and high top speed combination which characterises the FW45’s package, success for Williams could come down to tyre selection.
“Now the session’s finished, I want to see if everyone saved a set [of tyres] – who did, who didn’t,” Albon continued in reference to the Alternative Tyre Alloaction rules in force this weekend.
“I feel like in Q2, we did a really good Q2 run one, and maybe it wasn’t necessary to put that second set of mediums on because now we don’t have any new tyres for tomorrow.
“So, it’s going to be really interesting to see who’s saved a new set or not – that will make a big difference in the race tomorrow. So, we’re at a slight disadvantage, but we’re not really racing those cars in the front; our race tomorrow is with the McLarens and Fernando [Alonso], so let’s see.”
Albon’s Williams team-mate Logan Sargeant was also disappointed with his qualifying performance. The rookie found himself in P6 at the end of Q1 but left a “little bit on the table” as he failed to progress into the top 10 shootout.
“I feel like every time we’ve had the hard tyre on, the pace has been really good, and it feels like the car’s been under me. Did I leave a little bit on the table? Yes, but not the amount that I needed,” Sargeant, who qualified 15th, said.
“I feel like I’ve struggled to get that tyre working all weekend, I’m not really sure why to be honest. I was doing my best to do the out-lap as expected, but I just didn’t feel the increasing grip.
“I think I found three-tenths from my very first lap on the hard compound to my very last lap on the medium, so disappointing to have that big of a swing between Q1 and Q2.
“We’re going a little bit into the unknown into tomorrow, but I think there’s always opportunities on the table. This race is normally pretty crazy, so we’ll do our best to move forward and make something happen.”