Massa agrees to race for Williams in 2017, Bottas free for Mercedes

Felipe Massa has accepted an offer to remain in Formula 1 next year with Williams, paving the way for Valtteri Bottas to replace world champion Nico Rosberg at Mercedes

Massa agrees to race for Williams in 2017, Bottas free for Mercedes

Although final contracts have not yet been completed, Autosport's sister title Motorsport.com has learned that if Bottas does move to Mercedes, Massa is prepared to go back on his decision to retire at the end of the 2016 season.

Mercedes is keen to sign Bottas in the wake of Rosberg's shock retirement, but Williams had resisted initial approaches for the Finn, which have included offers of reduced engine supply costs and Mercedes junior driver Pascal Wehrlein as a replacement driver.

Williams said it would need a suitable, experienced replacement if it was to release Bottas, and Massa has now agreed to stay with the team for at least another year to help it deal with the major regulation changes for 2017.

Williams has signed 18-year-old rookie Lance Stroll as one of its drivers for the 2017 season, and departing technical chief Pat Symonds had said earlier this month that it was "crucial" to retain Bottas given Stroll's inexperience.

Mercedes has made it clear that a decision on who will partner Lewis Hamilton will not be announced before next year, with Niki Lauda saying that discussions were proving "difficult".

The world champion team admitted it had been caught off guard by Rosberg's decision and that it wanted to sort its line-up as quickly as possible.

shares
comments
Williams F1 technical boss Pat Symonds leaves the team

Previous article

Williams F1 technical boss Pat Symonds leaves the team

Next article

Perceptions of Pascal Wehrlein are wrong says Manor F1 chief Ryan

Perceptions of Pascal Wehrlein are wrong says Manor F1 chief Ryan
Load comments
Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner Plus

Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner

Stepping up to F1 in 1962, Jo Siffert shone with Rob Walker Racing Team and BRM before his career was abruptly ended in a fatal crash at Brands Hatch in 1971. Kevin Turner looked back at the life of Switzerland's first F1 winner on the 50th anniversary of his death

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat Plus

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat

OPINION: Max Verstappen is back in the lead of the 2021 Formula 1 drivers’ championship, with the season’s final flyaway events set to get underway in the USA this weekend. But a defensive stance he’s recently adopted could have a lasting impact for the Red Bull driver when it comes to his chances of defeating Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes

The hidden Ferrari struggle that Sainz’s recent charge put to rest Plus

The hidden Ferrari struggle that Sainz’s recent charge put to rest

Despite appearing to adjust to life as a Ferrari driver with relative ease, it was far from straightforward under the surface for Carlos Sainz Jr. But, having made breakthroughs in rather different routes at the Russian and Turkish races, he’s now targeting even greater feats for the rest of the Formula 1 season

Formula 1
Oct 20, 2021
The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team Plus

The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team

Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Autosport's technical consultant

Formula 1
Oct 18, 2021
Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence Plus

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence

In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding 
into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? STUART CODLING talks to the man in charge

Formula 1
Oct 17, 2021
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Plus

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Plus

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers Plus

Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021