Toro Rosso believes previously-axed Russian "deserves another chance in F1"; Just five seats now left open on 2019 grid
Tuesday 4 December 2018 17:40, UK
Daniil Kvyat, axed from the Red Bull family a year ago, will return to the Formula 1 grid with Toro Rosso in 2019.
The Russian was dropped by Red Bull and Toro Rosso prior to the end of last season following a rollercoaster relationship, but has earned a surprise comeback with the junior team after Pierre Gasly's promotion.
"I believe he deserves another chance in Formula 1," said team boss Franz Tost. "Daniil is a high skilled driver with fantastic natural speed, which he has proven several times in his career."
It has not yet been confirmed who Kvyat will partner next year, but current driver Brendon Hartley is under pressure and former Mercedes junior driver Pascal Wehrlein is thought to be the favourite.
After leaving Toro Rosso a year ago, Kvyat has been on the fringes of F1 this season as Ferrari's development driver.
"Even if my duties were primarily simulator based, I've learnt a lot, and I now feel stronger and better prepared than when I left Toro Rosso," said Kvyat. "I never gave up hope of racing again, I am still young and I have kept in good shape to always be prepared in case another opportunity presented itself. I will give my best to deliver what the team expects from me and I can't wait for everything to start again."
Kvyat's recall represents a dramatic turnaround in fortunes for the 24-year-old, whose frontline F1 career appeared over little under a year ago.
Just five seats now remain open on next season's grid.
Full statement from Toro Rosso
Scuderia Toro Rosso is pleased to welcome back Daniil Kvyat to its driver line-up for 2019. The 24-year-old Russian will replace Pierre Gasly, who is moving to the Aston Martin Red Bull Racing team. Kvyat has driven for us twice before, in 2014, and again rejoining us from the 2016 Spanish GP to the 2017 United States GP.
Franz Tost: "Pierre Gasly's impressive performance since he made his F1 debut last year has landed him a drive with Aston Martin Red Bull Racing next year. It is well deserved and from a Toro Rosso point of view, I am pleased that, once again, a driver from Helmut Marko's Red Bull Junior Programme has stepped up to Red Bull Racing - mission accomplished! As for Daniil's return, I believe he deserves another chance in Formula 1. Daniil is a high skilled driver with fantastic natural speed, which he has proven several times in his career. There were some difficult situations he had to face in the past, but I'm convinced that having had time to mature as a person away from the races will help him show his undeniable capabilities on track. We'll push very hard to provide him with a good package, and I feel the best is yet to come from his side. That's why we are happy to welcome him back to our team, to start a successful season together."
Kvyat's Red Bull journey...
|Makes F1 debut with Toro Rosso and breaks Vettel's record as sport's youngest point-scorer
|Confirmed as Vettel's replacement at Red Bull for the following year
|Secures first F1 podium, finishing second at the Hungarian GP
|Finishes seventh in the championship, three points ahead of Ricciardo
|Clashes with Vettel twice - at the Chinese and Russian GPs - and takes blame for both collisions
|Demoted to Toro Rosso by Red Bull, swapping places with Verstappen
|Enjoys solid return to former team and is confirmed for 2017 season
|Endures poor season and Toro Rosso replace him with Gasly for Malaysia and Japan
|Kvyat returns for US GP alongside Hartley and scores a point - but is still axed by Toro Rosso, and from the Red Bull family entirely
|Kvyat handed a lifeline by Ferrari as a development driver
|Russian is rehired by Toro Rosso for the 2019 season
What is Kvyat's F1 record so far?
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