Wolff Confident Bottas & Russell Will Have Strong Options If Miss Out On Mercedes Seat

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has said he believes Valtteri Bottas and George Russell will have great options with “challenger” teams next year should they miss out on a Silver Arrows seat.

Russell looks likely to replace Bottas at Mercedes, and it has been speculated that the Finnish driver could switch seats with the young Briton and return to Williams.

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However, Mercedes have insisted that they are yet to decide who will partner Sir Lewis Hamilton at the team next year, with them opting to reserve judgement until later in the season.

Bottas has raced with Mercedes since 2017, when he came into the team to replace Nico Rosberg, who decided to retire from Formula 1 after winning the 2016 World Championship.

Speaking this week, Wolff said Bottas and Russell will “have probably more than one option to stay in Formula 1.”

“George and Valtteri would have probably more than one option to stay in Formula 1 and race in Formula 1 with an attractive outlook,” Wolff said.

“Most teams see themselves as challenger teams. They expect a big step to be done next year because of the cost cap that is now valid for everybody.

“They have concentrated on next year’s development very early. You can see Alfa, Williams haven’t brought in a huge amount of pieces anymore for a while.

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“I think George and Valtteri would have, whatever we decide, great options,” he reiterated.

Last month, Wolff said he has a “responsibility” to help Bottas find another seat on the F1 grid should they decide to axe the Finn at the end of the season.

“If we were to come to the situation that we wanted to give somebody else a go, then it’s not only my relationship with him but also [my] responsibility that he has a great future. Because he deserves that,” the Austrian said.

“He has been the team mate of the best Formula 1 driver of all time and that is not always very easy to shine, but he’s fantastic.”