Bottas manager keeping future F1 options open


Valtteri Bottas’ managed Didier Coton has revealed that staying with the Williams Martini Racing team for 2016 is not a forgone conclusion as he looks for the best possible drive for his driver.

Bottas has been part of the Williams set up since 2010, and made his race debut with the team in 2013, but Coton insists that despite the team being a top team in the sport, it is not clear cut that he will continue this alliance in 2016 or beyond.

“For us, the complete package is important, the driver has certain objectives, and in Valtteri’s case he wants to win races and he wants to be world champion, and we need to work on that,” said Coton to Autosport.

“That could be with Williams, it could be with any other team, a team that will have the means necessary to do that. We will look at all the different possibilities for him in the long term to achieve his objective.

“Of course for me Williams is a top team. They had a difficult year a couple of years ago, as happens to many top teams. But we know the potential of Williams, what they have achieved in the past and the potential for the future.”

Ultimately Coton knows it will be the decision of his driver where his future lies, and that many factors need to be considered before the decision can be finalised.

“The concept is helping a sportsman through his career for the short and long term, and to take things step-by-step you need long-term vision,” continued Coton.

“You have to make sure what the sportsman – the driver – wants to achieve is achievable, and it’s about how to get there.

“There is a lot of groundwork to be done, and to be discussed with the driver because at the end he is the one that has to make the decision. We will do what we have to do, and Williams is naturally a team we need to speak to.”

Bottas has been linked recently to a drive at Ferrari to replace fellow Finn Kimi Raikkonen, but Coton insists no contact has been made with the Italian team.

“Valtteri was quite careful in what he said, making sure he did not hurt anybody because he has a lot of respect for his team, and he is pushing hard for Williams,” said Coton. “The other aspect is Kimi is a fellow countryman and the Scuderia has a relationship with their drivers.

“Valtteri is not the type to fire up on these kind of things, so he was extremely cautious and tried to be as diplomatic as possible in what he said.

“It is correct he has no contract for next year, and this is not something we are going to solve and announce within the next few days. We have to be relaxed about this. If we look at the Ferrari rumour, I don’t now where it came from. It was quite an interesting one, but completely untrue.”