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Pastor Maldonado happy for a fresh start after poor year with Williams

South American driver has been linked with Sauber and Lotus

By Sky Sports Online.   Last Updated: 18/11/13 4:50pm

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Pastor Maldonado admits he is glad to be leaving Williams as he prepares for his penultimate race with the team in the United States.

The Venezuelan's place with the team is being taken by Felipe Massa next year, leaving him without a drive for 2014 after a season he would rather forget.

Maldonado managed a victory and a pole position last season, scoring 45 points, but this season he has just one point from a season's best finish of 10th in Hungary in mid-summer.

And he was less than positive in his comments about his relationship with the team when asked if he was disappointed to be leaving, saying: "No, I'm very happy. I wanted to leave the team, and I'm happy about that.

"It's been a tough year, very hard for the whole team, but personally I want to drive something different.

"This is an important time for me in my career. It's a tough decision - my decision - but a great one.

"Overall, I feel I delivered more to the team than they did for me. We had a victory, some good results last year, and even this year we've done well in some races, but this is not everything. I'm waiting and expecting something more from Formula One."

Maldonado now has to work on his next move, with Lotus a possibility along with a couple of other teams, all of whom would benefit from a financial deal with sponsors PDVSA if Maldonado secures their aid again.

Venezuela's state-owned oil and gas giant was worth in the region of £27m per year to Williams but Maldonado stressed their relationship is not one set in concrete.

He added: "Maybe yes, maybe no. It's up to them. I am not PDVSA. They are a Williams sponsor, not my sponsor, who signed up when I arrived in Formula One.

"At the moment nothing's signed (with another team). We're working on things. We're talking with Lotus, and I've another couple of options.

"I hope soon to have a clear decision with everything all sorted, and a clear road for next year.

"The important thing for me is to be in Formula One. Of the young drivers I'm the only one who has won a race, (in Spain last year), so I can deliver a lot.

"Last year I was always competitive, but because of the condition of the car I've had this year everyone has forgotten my talent, the results and where we were last year.

"But I 100 per cent believe in my talent. I've won all the categories in the past, and I hope to win in Formula One again next year."

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