F1 Driver Alex Albon Hospitalized in ICU After Suffering Respiratory Failure

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 12, 2022

MONZA, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 08: Alexander Albon of Thailand and Williams talks to the media in the paddock during previews ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Italy at Autodromo Nazionale Monza on September 08, 2022 in Monza, Italy. (Photo by Bryn Lennon - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)
Bryn Lennon - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images

Formula One driver Alex Albon suffered respiratory failure and had to be hospitalized on Saturday, according to a statement from Williams Racing.

Albon underwent successful laparoscopic surgery earlier on Saturday for an appendicitis but suffered "unexpected post-operative anaesthetic complications" that led to his respiratory failure.

The 26-year-old was transferred to intensive care at a hospital in Monza, Italy, but made "excellent progress overnight and was able to be removed from mechanical ventilation yesterday morning."

He didn't suffer any further complications and has been transferred to the general ward. He is expected to be discharged and return home to England on Tuesday.

Per the Williams Racing statement, Albon is focused on his recovery and making his return to the track for the Singapore Grand Prix on Oct. 2.

The Thai driver had been scheduled to race in the Italian Grand Prix this past weekend but pulled out Friday because of appendicitis.

Alex Albon @alex_albon

Appendicitis, surgery and no racing isn’t what I was expecting this weekend!<br><br>Negatives: <br>- Missing out on what looks like a strong weekend for us<br>- Pain<br><br>Positives<br>- Weight reduction for Singapore<br>- Cool scars <a href="https://t.co/HOfA18eF5W">pic.twitter.com/HOfA18eF5W</a>

Nyck de Vries replaced him in the field, making his F1 debut. The 27-year-old was the Formula 2 champion in 2019 and the Formula E champion in 2021. The Dutchman finished ninth, scoring two championship points for Williams.

Albon was promoted to F1 in 2019 under Scuderia Toro Rosso, though he was promoted to Red Bull Racing after just 12 races and remained with the team for the 2020 campaign, finishing seventh.

He was demoted to the role of test and reserve driver for Red Bull in 2021. He joined the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters and finished sixth overall. Albon joined Williams Racing ahead of the 2022 campaign and is ranked 19th in the drivers' standings.