'He is a role model' - F1 star Alex Albon praised by his former school headteacher
PUBLISHED: 16:23 13 August 2019 | UPDATED: 18:58 13 August 2019
A rising Formula One star who has just landed one of the sport's top drives is continuing to inspire pupils at his former school, his former headteacher has said.
Alex Albon is moving from the junior Toro Rosso to Red Bull Racing for the next F1 race at Spa-Francorchamps, in Belgium.
The car is one of the best on the grid, with Albon's new team-mate Max Verstappen winning two races in the RB15 this season.
The news was particularly exciting for Peter Jones, the headteacher at Littlegarth School, an independent primary school and nursery in Nayland, where the young Albon began his education.
"I joined the school in 2003 when Alex was seven," said Mr Jones.
"He and his father came to see me, he was just embarking on karting and had showed talent.
"They needed time off to travel. He was going off for periods of time to go to Spain to have karts built for him.
"I was very happy for that to happen but he had to catch up with the work he had missed. He was never behind on his work."
Albon started to compete in more and more karting competitions, finding an aptitude in the sport.
"As he got older and better the trophies got larger," said Mr Jones.
"He would come into assembly and sometimes the trophies were bigger than him."
Albon eventually left the school in 2006 and moved on to Ipswich School, with more of his siblings following him to Littlegarth.
Despite having been away for a number of years, Mr Jones said the school is still so proud of what his former pupil had achieved and still keeps in touch with his parents to see how he was doing.
"It's fantastic he's got there. We've been following what he has done so far," said Mr Jones.
"People across the school, of all ages, have been watching and catching up on qualifying and the race after work."
Mr Jones added that Monday morning assemblies were often influenced by how the racer's weekend had gone.
One of the school's most valued possessions is a picture they kept of a young Albon with current world champion Lewis Hamilton.
"We are all really hopeful that he will prove Red Bull's trust in him to be worthwhile," said Mr Jones.
"He is a role model, we could not get better."