Claire Williams is confident that incoming F1 rookie Lance Stroll will deliver for the Williams team in 2017 as the team look to reclaim the pace that evaded them last season.
Stroll’s lack of experience is putting him under the spotlight in parallels to Max Verstappen’s arrival at Toro Rosso in 2015. The 18-year-old does has a steep learning curve ahead. At the same time, he may show a similar degree of fearlessness as Verstappen has so far. Stroll’s success at Williams has larger implications for the single-seater landscape. If he were to perform well, the result would surely reform the approach to the single-seater ladder, opening the door to F3 hopefuls and bypassing the more conventional F1 hatchery that is GP2.
Deputy team principal Claire Williams expects Stroll to find his form quickly.
“When it comes to Stroll I think out of courtesy we should reserve judgment.
Considering his age he has achieved a huge amount – he’s won every championship that he’s taken part in and particularly in the F3 championship.
As everybody knows, Williams isn’t a team that would put their stake into a driver that they didn’t believe could deliver. We are a serious team with serious ambitions and I am not going to put a driver in a car that I don’t believe will deliver. I believe that Stroll will.
I think we should give the guy the chance to prove his talent and to prove that he deserves the seat. And I wouldn’t put him in a car if I didn’t believe that he could deliver.”
– Claire Williams
Felipe Massa will rejoin the team should Bottas move to Mercedes as Williams play the balance between inexperience and bags of experience.