Williams denies 2018 Alonso talks

Williams has played down reports it is close to signing up Fernando Alonso for 2018.

Reports have suggested Alonso, the frustrated McLaren-Honda driver, could announce imminently that he is moving to the customer Mercedes-powered team next year.

But Williams deputy Claire Williams told Bild newspaper: "I read that with astonishment.

"I know nothing about it. I never negotiated with him -- never sat at a table with him," she insisted.

Williams also dismissed suggestions Alonso's huge 2017 salary would be paid by billionaire Lawrence Stroll, who wants the very best teammate to pair with his son Lance next year.

"Forget it," Claire Williams responded.

"Mr Stroll is a successful businessman because he does not throw money around like that."

(GMM)

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