Bottas: Ferrari rumors didn’t damage Williams relationship

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Valtteri Bottas believes that speculation about a possible move to Ferrari for the 2016 season did nothing to damage his relationship with current team Williams.

Bottas had been linked with a switch to Ferrari for 2016 as Kimi Raikkonen’s replacement, with reports in the Italian media suggesting that a fee of $13m had been agreed to release him from his Williams contract.

This speculation was grounded when Ferrari confirmed that Raikkonen would be retained for 2016 alongside Sebastian Vettel ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix.

Williams quickly followed suit by announcing that Bottas would remain with the team for next season over the Italian Grand Prix weekend at Monza.

Writing in his blog earlier this week, Bottas said that although the speculation did not damage his relationship with Williams, he was pleased to have his future secured and confirmed.

“It’s good to have the new contract signed and know what I’m going to be doing next year,” Bottas wrote. “At least there’s no more speculation and the team and myself can focus on the job of making the car quicker and delivering the results.

“We can now start working on the development of next year’s car and share all the information needed without any doubts.

“Our relationship wasn’t damaged at all, but that can happen if people think you are looking to leave a team. No damage has been done and I’m very happy to stay with the team, and they are very happy to keep me as well.”

Bottas believes that continuity will be key to a successful 2016 season, when he will race alongside Brazilian driver Felipe Massa once again.

“I get along with every single person at Williams and we have developed a very good working relationship over the years,” he said.

“I think this is the best place for me at the moment and continuity will be good for us, particularly as I’ll have the same team mate in Felipe Massa. Together we have a good baseline and we can work together to get even better results.”