Russian driver could replace Stroll

Tue, 28 August 2018, 10:35

Aug.28 (GMM) Williams could soon have an all-Russian driver lineup.

Team boss Claire Williams has confirmed that the struggling Grove based team expects to lose Lance Stroll, after his father Lawrence bought Force India.

“Undoubtedly, at some point Lance will move from our team to Racing Point Force India, but so far there’s no certainty in that,” she told Germany’s motorsport-magazin.com.

She denied that, with title sponsor Martini going too, the Stroll exit is basically the death knell for the once-great team.

“Lawrence Stroll was not a major investor,” Williams insisted. “Williams existed in formula one 38 years before Lawrence joined us, and we’ll be here for many more years after he goes.”

However, sooner or later, Williams will have to replace Lance Stroll.

The British team already has one Russian driver in the form of Sergey Sirotkin, who brings backing from SMP Bank.

And now, there are two other Russians who are lining up to join him. One is Nikita Mazepin, whose father Dmitry is querying the sale of Force India to Stroll.

When asked what Mazepin snr is up to in the paddock, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff answered: “I don’t know. We have talked, but only about the weather in Sardinia.”

The other Russian linked to Williams is Artem Markelov, who drives in Formula 2 for Russian Time. His father is a wealthy investor linked to that team.

“I hope they (Williams) will pay attention to me and give me an opportunity. We’ll see,” Markelov is quoted by Russia’s Sportbox.

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