Russell is entering the final year of his Williams F1 contract in 2021, which suggests he could join the Mercedes parent team for next season.
Mercedes has supported Russell’s racing career since late 2016 and chose to recruit him to race for his team when Lewis Hamilton tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the Sakhir Grand Prix.
Russell dominated the race and was on course for victory before a tire confusion and puncture left him to finish race ninth, but the performance only reinforced calls for him to be promoted. in the future.
Mercedes has two seats vacant for 2022 after Hamilton signed only a one-year contract extension, giving the team freedom in the driver market.
Russell stressed that any decision on a Mercedes seat was “out of my hands” and that no promises had been made on a possible promotion.
“Toto [Wolff] Always gave me his word, and he always gave me the opportunity when they believe I deserve it, ”said Russell.
“They told me that I am part of their future. Whenever this happens, it is again when they believe the time is right. I think a lot of people think next year is the natural way.
Photo by: Williams
“But also, things change very, very quickly in motorsport, especially in Formula 1. So I don’t even think about it to be honest.
“I obviously got a taste of life at the top of the grid last year, but like I said, I’m just focusing on the here and now, focusing on Bahrain. If I play on the right track and deliver, continuing on the same path and progress I’ve made so far, I guess in the future the opportunity will present itself.
“But I don’t even think about it and no promises were made.”
Russell played throughout his time at Williams although he never scored a point in F1 with the team, and was never overqualified by a teammate while driving for the British team.
Williams enters the 2021 season boosted by its takeover by U.S. investment group Dorilton Capital last summer, marking a new era for the team after struggling at the foot of the championship in recent years.
Asked about his plans if Mercedes doesn’t sign him to his squad for 2022, Russell spoke about Williams’ future prospects.
“There is a lot of speculation and thinking going into the 2022 season where I will be,” said Russell.
“If that didn’t happen, what most of you are speculating is an interesting position for me. But as it is now with the overall investment from Dorilton, the changes that I have already seen happen at Williams… Williams has finished last among constructors over the past three seasons. I don’t think that will be the case in 2022.
“I see a very bright future here. There is a huge opportunity for every F1 team for 2022, and like the guys said, with the investment we have, with the guys who are already there, with guys like Jost [Capito] coming up, the relationship that has been built with Mercedes, it looks very exciting for the team.
“I guess I have a very interesting decision to make around the middle of this year, but I don’t even think about it now.