Well, that was...expected. Valtteri Bottas has announced that he is leaving Mercedes at the end of this Formula 1 season to join Alfa Romeo, which clears the way for a certain young Williams hotshoe named George Russell to partner seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton.
That’ll no doubt be confirmed soon, with the 23-year-old Brit set to leave Williams after three mightily impressive years.
Bottas fills the spot at Alfa Romeo left by the impending retirement of Kimi Raikkonen, with the younger Finn signing what has been described as a ‘multi-year deal.’
“A new chapter in my racing career is opening: I’m excited to join Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen for 2022 and beyond for what is going to be a new challenge with an iconic manufacturer,” said Bottas.
“Alfa Romeo is a brand that needs no introduction; they have written some great pages of Formula 1 history and it’s going to be an honor to represent this marque. The potential of the setup in Hinwil is clear and I am relishing the opportunity to help lead the team forward up the grid, especially with the new regulations in 2022 giving the team a chance to make a leap in performance.
"I’m grateful for the trust the team has put in me and I cannot wait to repay their faith.”
NOTE: This article first appeared on TopGear.com. Minor edits have been made.