Nico Rosberg has agreed a new two-year contract with Williams, ending speculation that he could move to McLaren as a replacement for Fernando Alonso.
A Williams spokesman confirmed that Rosberg's new deal would run up to the end of 2009, and the 22-year-old German said, "I'm delighted about having two more years with Williams. Williams made me a much improved offer and I decided to accept it." Last month Williams confirmed that the Japanese driver Kazuki Nakajima would race for them alongside Rosberg next season.
"I'm now the No 1 driver in a very good team," said Rosberg, son of Finland's 1982 world champion Keke. "Of course I could have imagined myself at McLaren [in 2008], just as I could have imagined being at Ferrari. Every young driver wants to be in a winning car and to win races. I'm no different. I race for success. But I feel I have to be patient, like most people. There are only a few exceptions like Lewis [Hamilton] who can have immediate success. Mika Hakkinen had to wait six years for his first win."
McLaren have yet to announce a replacement for Alonso, who lis expected to re-join Renault.
Elsewhere, Michael Schumacher has advised his brother Ralf that it might be better to retire rather than crawl around in an uncompetitive car.
Ralf, younger brother of the seven-times world champion, suggested this week that he could be about to leave the sport after an unsuccessful test with Force India in Spain. Michael, who retired last year as the sport's most successful driver with 91 91 grands prix win, said he would support that.
"I don't know what his ambitions are," Michael said, "but crawling around in this car, I don't even know what it's called... He should not do that to himself. I've been saying to him for a long time that there are so many things in life you can do that are fun. He could still deliver good results but at the moment he doesn't have the right options."
Ralf, winner of six grands prix with Williams from 2001 to 2003, left Toyota at the end of the season in October and said after his test on Friday, "It's possible that today was my last drive in a Formula One car."