Lance Stroll says Felipe Massa will be a “sort of mentor” for him in 2017 during his maiden season in Formula One.
The 18 year-old dominated the European Formula 3 Championship last year and will become the second youngest driver to start an F1 race when he lines up with Williams Martini Racing for the 2017 Australian Grand Prix.
Stroll had initially been expected to link up with Valtteri Bottas, but the Finn's defection to Mercedes – to replace retiring World Champion Nico Rosberg – means he will now be joined by Massa, the Brazilian opting to return despite 'retiring' at the end of 2016.
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“I really am looking forward to Felipe being a sort of mentor to me,” Stroll said. “Of course we are competitors and we want to beat each other, but at the same time I think he has a lot of respect as a driver.
“We all know that he is very well respected throughout the paddock. He is a really nice guy, he is a team player and that is all really you ask for being in a team.
“You want someone that is a team player that will help the team go forward and not kind of create a problem on both sides of the garage.”
“I think it is really important to have two drivers who want to push the team in the right direction rather than fighting against one another,” added the Canadian.
“Obviously it is good to have competitiveness in the team and that urge to want to beat the driver next to you, but at the same time I think we are gonna respect each other.
“We are gonna want the best for the team. We are gonna help the team in the best way possible.”
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