Williams Martini Racing have today confirmed Valtteri Bottas and Lance Stroll will form the squad's 2017 driving lineup, as the legendary team seek to replace the outgoing Felipe Massa heading into the new season. It comes as no surprise to hear the announcement of Canadian youngster Stroll's signing to the team, the 18 year old son of billionaire Lawrence Stroll has been partaking in several test sessions driving a 2014 Williams chassis throughout the past year, alongside securing the 2016 FIA Formula Three drivers championship in only his third year of professional open wheel racing. Coming with substantial financial backing, it is perhaps unfair to immediately label the Stroll as a 'pay driver', the youngster has secured this season's coveted FIA Formula Three championship as well as previous success in both the Italian Formula 4 Series and the Toyota Racing Series in New Zealand. In somewhat of an unprecedented move, Stroll has already completed many miles aboard Formula One machinery as the driver has been on a bit of a tour of Europe in recent months behind the wheel of a two year old Williams Grand Prix machine, courtesy of the rule where unlimited testing is allowed for drivers using machinery at least two seasons departed from the current spec machinery in use during the regular racing season. Lance Stroll added: “To be racing in Formula One in 2017 is incredible, I can’t thank Williams enough for showing faith in my ability. Racing in F1 was something I dreamt about as a young kid. When I began karting seriously, F1 was then the ultimate goal and especially when I started racing cars in 2014. “2017 is going to be a big learning curve for me, but I’m eager to absorb everything Williams can share with me so that I improve. I’ll be taking things on a race-by-race, lap-by-lap basis and hopefully progress with experience like I did when I entered Formula 4 and then Formula 3. “I believe contesting the FIA European Formula 3 Championship for the past two years has prepared me well for the step up. There are many elements for me to learn and I’m still young. I’ve been experiencing a 2014-spec Williams FW36 since August, which has gone very well. The power is incredible. I’m learning about the car, the incredible downforce, DRS and tyre management, finding a rhythm and finding the limit. I’m becoming more comfortable and confident with each run. “I’ve enjoyed success in karting, F4, Toyota Racing Series and most recently F3 – winning every category I’ve competed in – so I believe I have earned a shot in F1. I’m very thankful to everyone who has helped me to reach this level.” Alongside the confirmation of Stroll returns Williams veteran Valtteri Bottas, looking to compete in his fifth season behind the wheel of a Williams machine, as the Finnish star continues his quest to secure his first Formula One Grand Prix victory for the Grove outfit. Once touted as a future World Champion by team founder Sir Frank Williams, Bottas has been in some demand during the past couple of years with both Ferrari and the newly reformed Renault team rumored to be interested in securing the services of the talented driver. Williams will be keen to ensure continuity alongside the 2017 rookie Stroll, and Bottas appears to be the perfect fit for the team as he continues to develop into his obvious potential after several up and down campaigns with the team. Speaking about the announcement Valtteri Bottas had the following to say; “Firstly, I am very happy that I will be starting my fifth season racing for Williams in 2017. It’s going to be an exciting year with all the regulation changes and a great opportunity for the team to get closer to the front. I’ll be giving 100% as always to the team. Thank you to Frank, Claire and the whole Williams Board for their continued trust in me. Also, thank you to everyone at Williams, as it will be nice to continue working together with everyone both at the factory and the track. “I’d also like to extend a very warm welcome from myself to Lance on joining the team. I look forward to seeing what we can achieve together. “Williams is like my family. Going into next season, it will be eight years in total since I joined at the start of 2010, so it really does feel like home here. However, I still believe we haven’t yet achieved what we should, and can do together.” In other Williams news, Claire Williams has confirmed her father and team founder Sir Frank Williams is back at home and recovering well from a recent bout of pneumonia. Sir Frank, 74, was taken ill at the recent Italian Grand Prix in Monza but is now back at home following a short stay in hospital. "He's now back home and he's back at the factory,” Claire Williams said. “He came out of hospital on Monday. He contracted pneumonia after Monza and has been in hospital ever since. It has been a slow recovery, I'm pleased to say he's pretty much back to the old Frank we know and love. It's lovely to have him back with the team.” Outgoing driver Massa will retire from the sport at the season ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, bringing to a close a 252 Grand Prix career that has earned the Brazilian eleven Grand Prix wins and 41 podium positions in a career that took in drives at Sauber, Ferrari and Williams - peaking with a last lap championship loss to Lewis Hamilton during the 2008 racing season. Check out the Formula One forum here at RaceDepartment for the latest news and discussion regarding the pinnacle of open wheel racing. Join in the discussion today! Do you think Lance Stroll has done enough to earn his seat at Williams next season? Can Valtteri Bottas take the next step up in his career and challenge for wins in 2017? Let us know in the comments section below!