Updated: Uralkali denies Mazepin in talks to takeover Williams

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Rumours that Russian billionaire Dmitry Mazepin is in talks to buy Williams have been denied by Uralkali.

The Grove-based team has been struggling with a lack of revenue in recent years and has had to make up the shortfall through driver backing and title sponsors.

A lack of financial clout has also contributed to their lack of competitiveness, although Williams previously admitted more money wouldn't have fixed their flawed car last year.

Mazepin is more well-known in motorsport circles as the father of Formula 2 driver Nikita Mazepin and had shown interest in buying Force India before Lawrence Stroll took over last summer.

And the first report by Motorsport.com's Italian edition during the Chinese Grand Prix weekend touted a leak from Williams that confirmed the talks were about a takeover rather than just Nikita.

However, now chemical producer Uralkali, of whom Mazepin is a 20 per cent shareholder, has denied the claim to RaceFans.

The information that appeared in the media is untrue,” a spokesman said. “Uralkali did not hold any negotiations regarding the purchase of the Williams team.”

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Of course, a denial at an early stage would be expected and if a takeover was to happen, it would probably spell the end of Williams' 40-year dynasty in F1, although the name itself would probably remain.

It would also be bad news for Robert Kubica who's 2019 seat was largely secured because of the money he brought from Poland's PKN Orlem.