Valtteri Bottas: Ferrari rumours were not fair

Over the last few months, Bottas has been linked with a drive for Ferrari for 2016 as a possible replacement for Kimi Raikkonen.

That speculation ended when Ferrari announced on Wednesday it had taken up the option on Raikkonen’s contract for 2016.

When asked if the rumours had been a distraction, Bottas said: “Yeah, definitely. It’s been unnecessary because most of it has not been true. It doesn’t do any good for mine and the team’s relationship. It’s not fair for us, to have those kind of rumours.

“It’s also not fair for Kimi or Ferrari. Now it’s easier, everyone knows more or less what is happening.”

Bottas denied personally speaking to Ferrari and added that the Raikkonen announcement did not change anything for him.

“At some point [according to reports] I have done a pre-contract and then signed a contract [with Ferrari],” he said. “It was not true. So what can you believe then?

“Of course, you need to look around at what is available. But now they have made a decision and it is clear for everyone what the situation is. It doesn’t change anything.”

Williams has an option to retain Bottas for next season and the Finn confirmed talks are currently taking place.

“You want to know as early as you can for next year or even more,” he said. “It would be nice to know. We have to wait, there is no mega rush.”

Bottas remains confident that if he stays with Williams, he and the team can be competitive in 2016.

“I just feel I’ve made a good job with this car,” he said. “I just want to be in a bit quicker car. As a team, with Williams, we can do it for next year, if I stay here and work together well.”

His team-mate Felipe Massa, who continues discussions with Williams regarding staying with the team next season, said he hopes the line-up remains the same.

“Hopefully we can still be another year together, me and Valtteri,” said Massa. “We are working well in the team. We just wait to see if it will happen, but hopefully it will happen. I don’t really see a reason why [he will] not [stay].”