American Logan Sargeant has secured the final spot on next year’s Formula 1 grid with Williams.
The team said last month that the 21-year-old would be brought in alongside Alex Albon if he gets the points required for an F1 licence.
Finishing fourth in the Formula 2 championship at the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi took Sargeant well beyond the required 40 points.
Williams is expected to confirm the move in the coming days.
Team principal and managing director Jost Capito said at the United States Grand Prix: “We believe he is ready to race in F1 and provided he has enough super license points , he will be our second driver next year.”
Sargeant’s promotion confirms that Mick Schumacher, who has raced for Haas for the past two years, lost his place in F1.
The US-based team announced on Thursday that it has signed German veteran Nico Hulkenberg as Kevin Magnussen’s teammate in 2023.
Hulkenberg has been without an F1 seat since his retirement from Renault at the end of the 2019 season, although he made a few substitute appearances for the Racing Point/Aston Martin team after Sergio Perez, Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel contracted Covid-19.
Schumacher, son of seven-time world champion Michael, wants to return to F1 as soon as possible.
“There are different opportunities and I strongly plan to be back in 2024,” he said.
He is tipped to become Mercedes’ reserve driver. No formal talks have yet taken place between the two parties, but Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said: “Mick is someone who has always been dear to us because of Michael or the whole family. Schumacher.
“Ralf [Michael’s brother] was in a DTM [car] a long time for us, his son drives Mercedes in GTs, and Mick is a smart, well-mannered young man.
“He has been very successful in the junior formulas. We believe we can deal with him should the situation arise and with someone who fits the team.
“But we haven’t really put pen to paper, we haven’t really come close to terms. I think he’s just fine and now we have to get there, if he wants to, Sabine [Kehm, Schumacher’s manager] wants and then we see, we see where it leads.”
Schumacher said: “Mercedes is a brilliant brand. What they have achieved in F1 is amazing so I am looking at all options and Mercedes is one of them.”
“My father moved from Ferrari to Mercedes at the time. I don’t see why not now, but I have the time now so I will consider all the options I have and then make the right decision for me.”
“But it’s really very humbling to hear what Mercedes – and especially Toto – is saying about me.”