Williams acting team principal Simon Roberts refuses to confirm both George Russell and Nicholas Latifi will drive for the team next year despite having contracts.
As reported by RACER earlier this week, Sergio Perez has emerged as a candidate to join Williams in 2021 as he can bring a commercial package to the team, with Russell’s seat most under threat as a result. Despite the public comments that have been made since then and increasing speculation, Roberts says he has no update on the team’s driver situation.
“Nothing’s changed,” Roberts said. “There’s lots of speculation, there’s lots of good drivers around that are now looking for seats. Dorilton bought the team and nothing changed. So I can’t say anymore than that.
“I’m not going to say anything about either of our drivers, they are both doing a great job, but there’s so much speculation around, I don’t want to inadvertently fuel it. Someone will take some nuance of whatever we say. So we’re happy, let’s watch the rest of the market.”
When asked if he could confirm the current contracts will be honored, Roberts replied: “I’m just not going to talk about it.
“Dorilton bought the team, nothing changed with regard to the drivers. There’s just so much speculation, and rumor, it’s crazy. It is silly season, after all. We’re not saying any more than that.”
And although Roberts agreed he could end all the speculation by ruling out a move for Sergio Perez, he again declined to do so.
“Possibly, but we just don’t want to say anything one way or the other,” he said. “We’re here focusing on our race weekend. We haven’t got any news.
“We’ve got plenty on this morning. We’ve run lots of parts in first practice. We’ve got to get through all that and get both our drivers in the best possible place for Saturday or Sunday.”
Roberts did confirm that a driver decision will be made collectively by team management.
“The decision will be made by the management committee and the board of Williams Formula 1,” he said. “So it’s a very normal situation but we have nothing to say on that matter right now, that’s all I can say.”