Williams insists it won't wait too long for Button

Williams has insisted that it will not wait for too long on Jenson Button to decide if he wants to join the team.

Williams insists it won't wait too long for Button
Jenson Button, McLaren MP4-31
Jenson Button, McLaren MP4-31
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 with Jenson Button, McLaren on the drivers parade
Claire Williams
Jenson Button, McLaren on the drivers parade
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 VJM09

The Grove-based team is understood to have already held preliminary discussions with the former world champion about a deal for 2017, but these have not reached an advanced stage yet.

While Williams would love to have Button on board, it also has a host of other candidates for a seat next year.

It has an option on Valtteri Bottas, and is also interested in Sergio Perez if the Mexican believes he can get out of his Force India contract. Felipe Nasr could also make the switch from Sauber.

Development driver Lance Stroll has also emerged as a surprise contender for a seat, on the back of his strong F3 campaign this season.

The availability of other drivers means Williams is not dependent on what Button does, and deputy team principal Claire Williams has made clear that it will do what it feels is best for its own interests.

"We will own our driver line-up decision, and I am not sat here waiting for [McLaren chairman] Ron Dennis to make his decision or for Jenson to make his decision," Williams told the Press Association.

"It it is not about what other people are doing. I am not going to be waiting around because that is just not the right mentality for a team like ours to have.

"It would be a great story, but he has to make the right choice for him, and we have to make the right choice for the team."

As well as his speed and experience, Button would be valuable for Williams because he is attractive to sponsors.

Williams added: "When I talk about the criteria that we are looking at, it is the talent in the cockpit, the intelligence to feed back to the engineers, and for us, as an independent team, the commercial factors are going to play a part in the decision-making process too.

"You can't have an unknown driver in your car. It is just not going to work."

Regarding Perez, Williams said: "Sergio has done a great job this year, he is an intelligent driver, and of course he is going to be someone we are looking at.

"I have only met him briefly on the odd occasion. He is very charming. He is very eloquent, so commercially he would be strong for any team.

"Of course he is going to be someone you'd consider if he is available."

Jenson Button, McLaren Honda
If you want to buy a cap like Jenson's, click on the image.

Photo by: XPB Images

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