Ronnie Wood’s bandmates thought Katia Ivanova was bad for him.
The 62-year-old musician – who recently revealed he has been sober for 60 days following a lengthy battle with alcoholism – is now dating Brazilian beauty Ana Araujo, 30, and his group The Faces think she is a much better influence on him than the Russian cocktail waitress was.
The Faces keyboardist Ian McLagan told Rolling Stone magazine: "Ronnie had been struggling and quite frankly I think he was with the wrong girl for a while. His girlfriend now is so encouraging and helpful to him and she’s right for him.
“I’m a drinker and after rehearsals me and Ronnie went out and I thought he was going to weaken. He said: 'You can have a drink,' and I said: 'Not if you aren't.' He used the expression: 'I think I’ve found my grace,' which I think says it all. We were drinking partners and now that’s gone, but he’s just as much fun without a drink."
Ronnie ended his tempestuous 15-month relationship with Katia, 21, at the end of last year, embarking on a romance with Ana soon after.
Pals have previously spoken of the positive effect Anna has had on the rocker.
One friend said: "She is such a positive influence on him and they've very relaxed in each other's company. They're happy enjoying the simple things in life like staying in, making meals and watching films.
"He couldn't be happier.”