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Massa: Bottas key to 2016 driver market

14 Jul 2015

Felipe Massa says his Williams team mate Valtteri Bottas is likely to be crucial to any potential driver changes ahead of the 2016 FIA Formula One World Championship.

Bottas, who scored his first podium of the season in Canada last month, has been linked in the media to a potential switch to Ferrari in place of Kimi Raikkonen, and Massa believes his current partner’s talent will make him a key player in who goes where next season.

"I think he is one of the most important names on the market," the Brazilian commented. 

"He shows he is a good driver, he has the talent to drive in a top team, and he shows he can do well, whatever team he is racing for. That's why all the teams are interested to get him.

"But we cannot forget he has an option to stay here, so we need to understand what is going to happen. I don't know if he is going or not - we need to wait and see."

Asked about his own future, Massa - who has an option for 2016 with Williams - said he expects to remain with his current team.

"I am happy where I am," he stressed. "Sometimes it's not just money or things like that making a difference: you need to understand what you are doing, where you are and how happy you are.

"I really like this team - they respect me a lot, I feel relaxed and we have some good results as well. I don't see why things would change.

"We have an option for next year, [and] I don't see really why we wouldn't take it and carry on. Results are always the best [way] to keep you happy and relaxed and in the right mind. I feel happy; we're doing a good job."

Like Bottas, Massa has scored one podium with Williams this season. He lies sixth in the driver standings, two places - but just three points - behind his team mate.