Valtteri Bottas has signed a new deal with Mercedes to remain at the Brackley-based outfit for a second season.
The Finn was drafted in as a replacement for reigning world champion Nico Rosberg and has performed admirably for the Silver Arrow this year.
Bottas has taken two pole positions and two victories in 2017 and is currently sitting third in the drivers’ championship on 197 points; the new deal is believed to be a one-year contract extension.
“I am honoured and proud to continue to work with Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport in 2018 and to remain part of the Mercedes family,” said Bottas. “Together, we continue to grow stronger day by day, and by keeping up our hard work I believe the sky is the limit.
“Since joining the team in January, I’ve enjoyed every day working with them. The welcome and the support from every team member and all the fans has been invaluable.
“As a driver, I’ve been able to learn and grow massively, and we have already enjoyed some really good moments this season that I will never forget.
“When the team hired me for the 2017 season, they took a leap of faith by putting their trust in my skills. This new contract for 2018 shows that I’ve earned that trust. I’m happy to have celebrated my first race wins in a Silver Arrow.
“I will continue to work hard on and off the track, to further improve my driving, get even better results and show that putting their trust in me was the right decision.”
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff commented: ““We gave Valtteri a big challenge this year: joining the team at the eleventh hour, stepping up to the forefront of F1 and pairing with the sport’s best driver as his team-mate. With that in mind, his results have been probably even more impressive.
“Overall, the balance of his performances and his upward trajectory made it a no-brainer for us to continue with him into 2018.
“For our team, the bonus factors are the respect and sportsmanship that have grown between our two drivers. The chemistry and dynamic between Valtteri and Lewis work and are what we need to take the fight to our competitors.”