Toro Rosso has laid to rest rumours of a lineup change by resigning their current roster of Carlos Sainz and Daniil Kvyat for the 2017 season.
Speculation had surrounded the team the past few races whether Kvyat would be resigned, or if Red Bull would promote rising young talent Pierre Gasly to their squad. However, as the team announced that both drivers would continue in the Red Bull program Saturday morning in Austin, it seems that Kvyat’s recent performances have secured his drive for immediate future after experiencing a rough patch of performances mid-season.
The Russian started the 2016 season as a Red Bull Racing driver, following a successful maiden year with the team in 2015 as he replaced the outgoing Sebastian Vettel to partner Daniel Ricciardo, beating the Australian by three points.
Although, an inconsistent start to this year’s season saw Kvyat on the podium in China, then retire out of the following race in Russia after crashing into Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari, giving Red Bull the perfect excuse to send Kvyat back to Toro Rosso and promote Max Verstappen to the senior squad.
After struggling initially with returning to Toro Rosso and getting to grips with the car, Kvyat spiraled into a dark patch, where he was questioning his own ability as his performances dropped dramatically.
However, a recent string of decent outings has given Toro Rosso enough confidence in the young Russian to retain him for another year.
“Great news! I’d like to thank Red Bull, Dr. Marko and all the team for their support and the faith they have shown in me since I returned to the team earlier this year,” Kvyat said.
“I’m very happy to stay with a team that feels like home to me. I’m really looking forward to continuing the hard work together in 2017 and I’m really aiming high. I will always be fully dedicated, giving my ‘200%’, and I will be pushing as hard as I usually do, that’s for sure. I’m delighted!”
His team mate Sainz also shared the same enthusiasm for next year as the continuality of retaining the same drivers will help Toro Rosso in the future.
“Considering how many changes there are in the Formula 1 pipeline for 2017, it’s good to know that Daniil and I will continue to be teammates here at Toro Rosso next year,” Sainz said.
“We know each other very well, as we’ve been racing together since 2010, and we work well together. I know that this season isn’t over yet, but I’m already looking forward to next year!”
Image via Red Bull Content Pool