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Williams confirm Bottas and Maldonado for 2013 28 Nov 2012

Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams Third Driver.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19 United States Grand Prix, Preparations, Austin, Texas, 15 November 2012 Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams FW34 Third Driver.
Formula One World Championship, Rd20 Brazilian Grand Prix, Practice, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 23 November 2012 Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Williams, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams Third Driver, Frank Williams (GBR) Williams Team Owner and Bruno Senna (BRA) Williams at the Williams Team Photo.
Formula One World Championship, Rd20 Brazilian Grand Prix, Qualifying, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 24 November 2012 Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Williams.
Formula One World Championship, Rd20 Brazilian Grand Prix, Qualifying, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 24 November 2012 Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams Third Driver and Frank Williams (GBR) Williams Team Owner at the Williams Team Photo.
Formula One World Championship, Rd20 Brazilian Grand Prix, Qualifying, Sao Paulo, Brazil, 24 November 2012

Williams have announced that Finnish test driver Valtteri Bottas will be promoted to a race seat for 2013, partnering Pastor Maldonado, who has been retained for a third season. Bottas, with Williams since 2010, replaces Bruno Senna in the team’s line-up.

"It has always been my life-long dream to compete in the Formula One world championship,” said Bottas, 23. “To do so with one of the most legendary teams in the sport is incredibly special. I’ve really enjoyed my three years with Williams so far and feel very at home here so my goal was always to stay for 2013 and progress to a race seat. I’m looking forward to getting my Formula One career started and enjoying a lot of success with Williams."

In his role as Williams reserve driver Bottas has taken part in a number of this season’s Friday practice sessions, impressing the team with his pace and maturity from the outset. The GP3 champion in 2011, 2013 will see him compete in a Grand Prix for the first time.

The renewal of Maldonado’s contract comes on the back of a successful 2012 campaign that saw the Venezuelan win the Spanish Grand Prix in commanding style and go on to finish 15th in the final driver standings.

"I’m really enjoying my time with Williams and I was obviously very happy when I was told that I would be continuing with the team in 2013,” said Maldonado. “2012 was a memorable year for me with the win in Barcelona and we made a big step forward in terms of performance. I have a lot of confidence in the team and hopefully next year will see us move even further up the grid and taste more success."

Sir Frank Williams, founder and team principal, said: “In Pastor and Valtteri we have two of the most exciting talents in motor racing and I am especially excited about what 2013 can bring for Williams. Pastor has always demonstrated remarkable pace and this year has seen him mature as a racing driver.

“Valtteri is quite simply one of the most talented young racing drivers I have come across and we expect great things from him in the future. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our departing driver Bruno Senna for his hard work over the past year and wish him the best of luck going forward."

Williams finished eighth in the 2012 constructors’ standings, with Senna adding 31 points to the 45 scored by Maldonado.

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