Sports Desk, Sep 6 (EFE).- Valtteri Bottas is set to join Alfa Romeo’s Formula One team on a multi-year deal from Mercedes starting in 2022, F1 media said in a statement.
The Finnish driver has partnered with Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes since 2017.
“A new chapter in my racing career is opening: I’m excited to join Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN for 2022 and beyond for what is going to be a new challenge with an iconic manufacturer,” Bottas said in a statement.
The announcement comes after Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Räikkönen, the most veteran driver on the circuit, said he would retire at the end of the season.
There had been a lot of speculation over Bottas’ future with the Silver Arrows amid rumors team principal Toto Wolff was looking to bring young British driver George Russell into the Mercedes fold after his stint at Williams.
In a Mercedes statement, Wolff said: “Together with Lewis, he has built a benchmark partnership between two team-mates in the sport, and that has been a valuable weapon in our championship battles and pushed us to achieve unprecedented success.”
Alfa Romeo’s team principal Frederic Vasseur said: “It is a pleasure to welcome Valtteri to the team and we are looking forward to our journey together. With him, we bring to Hinwil a strong team player with experience at the sharp end of the grid.”
Bottas is currently third in the 2021 leaderboard. His highest position of the year so far was a second-place performance at the Austrian Grand Prix.
He has finished in third place six times so far this year.
Hamilton and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen are toughing it out for the 2021 season win. The Dutchman hopped the Brit into first place on Sunday after finishing first from pole in the Dutch Grand Prix. EFE