Bottas, Raikkonen, Wehrlein star as ‘silly season’ begins image

Apr.30 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Rumours in Italy suggest Valtteri Bottas’s formula one future is coloured in red.

Former double world champion Mika Hakkinen, now involved in the management of the Williams driver’s career, said this week that if he was the decision-maker at Ferrari, he is not sure he would retain Kimi Raikkonen.

On the other hand, “Valtteri showed how well he can handle the pressure” as he raced Sebastian Vettel in Bahrain, Hakkinen told his sponsor Hermes in an interview.

“It was exactly the sort of strong nerves that drivers need in the fight for world championships,” he insisted.

Media sources now suggest that Bottas may have already penned a preliminary contract with Maranello based Ferrari.

The rumours also indicate that the forthcoming F1 entrant Haas, which is being widely referred to as a Ferrari ‘B team’, could house Raikkonen next year, as the Finn is pushing for the 2016 ‘option’ in his contract to be signed.

Finally, the rumours suggest Williams would fill the seat vacated by Bottas with Pascal Wehrlein, who is engine supplier Mercedes’ reserve driver.

To accommodate the Bottas-Wehrlein movement, Mercedes may be prepared to discount the fee paid for its engines by Williams, who recorded a $50 million financial loss in 2014.