Lawrence Stroll has declared that his son Lance “will be in F1 next year”, though the Canadian businessman would not confirm whether he would graduate to grand prix racing with Williams or another team.
Stroll signed off his Formula 3 European championship career with a perfect score at Hockenheim last weekend, having already sealed the title two weeks earlier in Imola.
The Williams development driver has been strongly tipped to replace the retiring Felipe Massa at Grove in 2017, and has been ramping up preparations ahead of his expected F1 promotion by securing extensive mileage in a 2014-spec car.
“Lance will be in F1 next year,” Stroll Snr told French-language publication Le Journal de Montreal. “You can mark my words.”
“He is fulfilling his dream. His race and title wins in F3 are no small feat, but what I am the most proud of is the way he has reached these heights.
“You have no idea how hard he has worked since his career started. His care and relentlessness have made him a champion this year. It’s been a long, sometimes tough journey but he has reaped the most beautiful reward.
“Now he has reached his ultimate goal of making it into F1. I’m sure he’ll be successful there. It’s a big challenge and he has been preparing for it for a long time.”
When asked whether Williams was the team his son would be competing for in 2017, Stroll Snr replied: “We are currently studying two options. Everything will be clear in a few weeks’ time.”
The article adds that Stroll’s F1 plans should be announced in London on November 3, a couple of days after the Canadian teenager’s 18th birthday.