Williams remaining tight-lipped over driver line-up

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Claire Williams has said that Williams will not be rushed into making a decision about their driver line-up for 2014 as rumors suggesting that Pastor Maldonado may be on the verge of leaving the team intensify.

Maldonado has been highly critical of the team after a difficult season that has seen the one-time grand prix winner score just one point. The Venezuelan driver said that he may as well “stay at home” instead of languishing outside of the points, but he insisted on Thursday in Abu Dhabi that he was yet to make a decision about his future and that he could remain with Williams. Deputy team principal Claire Williams echoed his sentiments, saying that the team would not be rushed into a decision.

“We’re making progress,” she explained. “I think we’d ideally like to be able to make our driver announcement soon. Historically we’ve probably left it until the end of the season. I couldn’t give you a date now as to when we’re going to make the announcement but we’re definitely making progress.”

However, Williams went on to say that other drivers’ contracts can defeat the object of making an early announcement as they are unable to start working with their new team until late in the season.

“Most drivers have contracts that run up until certainly the last race of the season, and if not, the end of December so they can’t necessarily come in and help you when you want them to anyway,” she said.

Valtteri Bottas is also yet to be confirmed by the team for 2014, but he explained earlier this week that he is excited about the team’s future.