Ousted Red Bull driver Daniil Kvyat has been signed to Ferrari as its development driver for 2018, the Maranello based team has announced.
After the Russian had been demoted multiple times within Red Bull’s ranks over the past two Formula 1 seasons, he has ended up without a race seat for the 2018 season.
With the resurgence of Ferrari in 2017, the move to bring Kvyat onboard shows the Italians have perhaps developed a sense of humour, not just a competitive race car.
Kvyat’s inital demotion from the main Red Bull squad came after the 2016 Russian Grand Prix when his over-eager approach to the opening lap resulted in contact and the retirement of Sebastian Vettel in the Ferrari, whom Kvyat his twice in the space of two corners.
This incident came a race after Vettel dubbed Kvyat as “a torpedo” after the German was caught off guard by the Russian’s lighting start in China, giving him a free character assessment in the pre-podium debrief room.
Staying with Red Bull’s lower team, Toro Rosso, for the rest of the 2016 season, Kvyat stayed there for a majority of 2017 before a lack of pace meant he was shafted in favour of reigning GP2 (now Formula 2) champion Pierre Gasly.
While he made one more start for Toro Rosso at the US Grand Prix, it would be his last to date in F1 due to being permanently replaced by Brendon Hartley with Red Bull releasing him from their development program at the end of the year.
Kvyat’s appointment at Ferrari sees him replace former team-mate Jean-Éric Vergne who was in the same driver development program as the Russian, leaving the Red Bull family in 2014.
Image via Red Bull Content Pool