Bottas unlikely to step up to 2011 F1 seat

6 October, 2010

29th January 2010 Valterri Bottas photographed at the Williams HQ on Friday  on his appointment as the official AT&T Williams team test driver. Photo: Glenn Dunbar/LAT Photographic  ref: Digital Image _MG_7976

Valterri Bottas

Oct.6 (GMM) Williams reserve driver Valtteri Bottas has put his hopes of stepping into the team’s race cockpit on hold until 2012.

The 21-year-old Finn, third in the F3 Euroseries standings, admitted recently that British team Williams was “not likely to change” its current driver lineup for 2011.

“The next step would be GP2,” Bottas, who is managed by Mika Hakkinen, said in July.

He has now told Finland’s Turun Sanomat newspaper that Rubens Barrichello does indeed look set to have his Williams deal extended.

“He is still fast,” Bottas is quoted as saying.

“He has been really useful to the team and it’s true to say a big part of the development of the car is due to him,” he added.

Meanwhile, Williams’ Austrian minority co-owner Toto Wolff has told the Kleine Zeitung newspaper that Barrichello’s rookie teammate Nico Hulkenberg is also likely to keep his seat.

“Of all the young drivers he is probably the best at the moment,” he said. “He is actually remarkable; only the experience is missing.

“I feel quite comfortable with this driver combination. My word has at least as much weight as the others on the board, and this applies to the drivers as well,” added Wolff.


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