Stroll: Track record proves I earned F1 seat with Williams

© Williams Martini Racing
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Lance Stroll is confident that his record through junior motorsport categories proves that he has earned his place in Formula 1 with Williams for 2017.

Williams announced on Thursday that Stroll, 18, would be joining its F1 line-up for 2017, partnering Valtteri Bottas.

The Canadian driver has spent two years racing in single-seaters, winning the Italian F4 title in 2015 before becoming the youngest FIA F3 champion in history this season.

Stroll’s career has been bankrolled by his billionaire father, Lawrence, who made his fortune as an investor in Tommy Hilfiger.

Stroll Jr. has enjoyed a substantial testing program funded by his father in anticipation of his F1 debut, getting to grips with a 2014-spec Williams at a number of tracks across the globe over the past few months.

However, Stroll insists that his background is not of importance, instead wanting to do his talking on-track as he did through his junior racing career.

“I come from money, I’m not going to deny that,” Stroll said.

“I believe I won my shot in F1 because I won every championship I’ve competed in in single-seaters.

“Now the FIA have put in Super Licence for that reason, so people can’t buy their way into F1. You have to prove yourself and win in junior categories.

“I don’t want to say when I’ll be able to show I’m not just here for money. That just depends on so many things.

“I’m just going to worry about my business. I’m very happy to be here and I’m just looking forward to next season.”

“Money doesn’t drive performance. You either have the talent or you don’t,” Williams deputy team boss Claire Williams added.

“Lance has proved he has talent and has done what he has done. He has to do the job next year and he will do that.”