Stroll on pole for Williams race seat in 2017

Williams development driver Lance Stroll has emerged as the clear favourite to replace Felipe Massa at the Grove-based team next year.

Stroll on pole for Williams race seat in 2017
Lance Stroll, Williams Development Driver
Lance Stroll, Prema Powerteam, Dallara F312 - Mercedes-Benz
Lance Stroll, Prema Powerteam Dallara F312 - Mercedes-Benz
Podium, Lance Stroll, Prema Powerteam Dallara F312 - Mercedes-Benz
Lance Stroll, Prema Powerteam Dallara F312 – Mercedes-Benz

Several sources in the Monza paddock have indicated that the deal has already been agreed in principle – but the Canadian will first have to guarantee that he qualifies for a Formula 1 superlicence in 2017.

Stroll is currently leading the European F3 Championship with three weekends, and thus nine races, still to run.

Thanks to winning the Italian F4 title in 2014 and finishing fifth in European F3 last year, in theory he needs only to finish third this year to qualify for a superlicence. He becomes eligible for one after he turns 18 on October 29.

However there is an obvious desire for him to win the F3 title anyway and thus further justify his graduation to both the management and sponsors of Williams.

Stroll’s father Lawrence is an owner of the Prema GP2 outfit, and the original plan was for Lance to race for it next year.

However the feeling in the Stroll camp is that he has exceeded expectations this year and done enough in F3 to make the move straight to F1, and it would be better for him to continue his education at Williams rather than risk being beaten in GP2.

It was noted that in the wake of Massa's retirement, and growing indications that a deal with the young Canadian is close, that Lawrence Stroll was in Monza this weekend.

Stroll joined Williams in November 2015, having previously been a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy.

It is understood that Williams had initially been interested in signing Jenson Button as potential teammaate to Valtteri Bottas, but the talks did not advance far and the Briton is remaining at McLaren in a development role.

Force India option

Although Stroll is the favourite for the Williams drive, the other option that is being considered is Force India.

Sergio Perez's future has yet to be finalised, despite him having a contract for next year. The team remains in talks with the Mexican's backers to finalise a sponsorship package for next year.

If the outfit does lose Perez, then Stroll is an obvious candidate to move there as teammate to Nico Hulkenberg.

shares
comments
Jenson Button to take sabbatical in 2017, replaced by Stoffel Vandoorne in McLaren F1 race seat

Previous article

Jenson Button to take sabbatical in 2017, replaced by Stoffel Vandoorne in McLaren F1 race seat

Next article

Liberty Media F1 takeover could be days away

Liberty Media F1 takeover could be days away
Load comments
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Prime

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Prime

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences.

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Prime

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Prime

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Prime

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1's elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he's recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Italian Grand Prix driver ratings

Two drivers produced faultless performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left many to rue what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Prime

Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021