Motor Racing: Williams signs George Russell, only 4 seats vacant for 2019 season

George Russell
George Russell YouTube grab

The next season of the Formula One is all set to witness massive changes in terms of driver line-up. The 2019 season will see many young drivers on board and the latest to join the club is 20-year-old British racing driver George Russell.

Williams Racing has confirmed that one of the race seats for the 2019 FIA Formula One World Championship has been sealed by Russell with a multi-year agreement. The current Mercedes test driver's promotion wasn't something unexpected as he leads the F2 title race for the current season by 37 points.

Russell started his career in karting an early age and stepped into single-seater racing in 2014, winning the BRDC Formula 4 Championship at his first attempt. Russell progressed to the Formula 3 European Championship for two seasons and then went onto win the GP3 championship in his rookie 2017 season with two races to spare.

He stepped up to the FIA Formula 2 Championship this year and is on the verge of winning the championship in the first attempt itself.

"It is a huge honour to join a team of Williams' prestige and heritage. Formula One has been a life-long dream... I am incredibly excited to start working with everyone at Grove and to take my first steps as a Formula One race driver. I cannot wait for Melbourne next year and to join Williams at the start of what we all believe will be the start of an exciting new journey," Russell said.

Only 4 race seats left for 2019 Formula 1 season

The arrival of Russell to Williams means there are only four race seats left for the 2019 season. Williams and Toro Rosso are yet to announce the second drivers while Racing Point Force India is yet to announce any of its drivers.

Current Williams driver Lance Stroll is expected to make a move to Force India as his father is now a co-owner of the team that was put under administration during the summer break.

Force India is also expected to retain Sergio Perez. Multiple reports claim Force India's Estaban Ocon is likely to be roped in by Williams to replace Sergey Sirotkin.

2019 F1 grid

  1. Mercedes – Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas
  2. Ferrari – Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc
  3. Red Bull - Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly
  4. Renault – Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg
  5. Haas – Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen
  6. McLaren – Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris
  7. Sauber – Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi
  8. Toro Rosso – Daniil Kvyat and TBC
  9. Williams – George Russell and TBC
  10. Force India – TBC