Williams to Release Button for Two Years

Williams will announce a two-year break from their contract with Formula One driver Jenson Button on Thursday, according to team sources, paving the way for Button's move to a rival outfit next season.

Williams to Release Button for Two Years

Williams will announce a two-year break from their contract with Formula One driver Jenson Button on Thursday, according to team sources, paving the way for Button's move to a rival outfit next season.

Williams, however, will retain the right to recall the 20-year-old Briton in 2003.

Button, in his first season in Formula One, is expected to move to Benetton at the end of the current campaign.

Benetton team chief Flavio Briatore has already said he would like to sign him.

"The deal is not done yet but we are very impressed with him," Briatore said two weeks ago at Hockenheim.

The Willams sources did not name a replacement for Button but talk in the paddock has been of Juan Pablo Montoya after the Colombian's triumphant spell in America's ChampCar series and his Indianapolis 500 victory in May.

No announcement on Williams' new driver, however, will be made until the U.S. Grand Prix next month.

Button, who is tied to Williams under a five-year contract, has been impressive during his first season and is clearly seen as a talent with a big future.

His best finish was fourth in the German Grand Prix in July after starting at the back of the grid.

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