The chase is on
Shanghai 2018
Chinese Grand Prix
Russia gets a new star: Daniil Kvyat beats rivals to 2014 Toro Rosso seat
Red Bull Racing
Posted By: James Allen  |  21 Oct 2013   |  9:24 pm GMT  |  169 comments

Daniil Kvyat has beaten off strong opposition from Felix da Costa and Carlos Sainz Jr to land the second Toro Rosso seat for next season, replacing Daniel Ricciardo.

The news that the 19 year old has a confirmed seat means that next year there will be at least one Russian on the grid, when F1 arrives in Sochi for the inaugural Russian Grand Prix. He becomes the second Russian driver to make it to F1, after Vitaly Petrov who raced in 57 Grands Prix for Renault, Lotus and Caterham.

The choice is interesting; after Mark Webber announced his retirement from F1, creating an opening at Red Bull Racing, da Costa was widely tipped as his successor. As the summer went on however Sainz staked his claim, helped by influential friends of his father, the former rally champion.

But this site heard from senior drivers in the Red Bull programme that the one they felt had the most talent was Kvyat and it is reassuring to see that the management shares this view. The youngster has really impressed this year in GP3 and still has a chance to win the title.

He will be following in the footsteps of Valterri Bottas who moved into F1 direct from GP3, without doing GP2.

Team principal Franz Tost said, “Daniil is a very talented driver, which can be seen from his results in all the junior categories. He was a very successful Kart driver and, in 2012 he took the Formula Renault 2.0 Championship title with 7 wins. This year, he competed in six rounds of the FIA European Formula 3 Championship, taking 1 win, 5 poles and 5 podiums.

“In addition to this, he is still in a position to win the GP 3 Championship, as he is only 7 points behind the leader. He impressed our team with a strong performance and very informative technical feedback at the young driver test in Silverstone.”

Featured News
MORE FROM Red Bull Racing
Share This:
Posted by:

Add comment

E-mail is already registered on the site. Please use the Login form or enter another.

You entered an incorrect username or password

Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!


by Oldest
by Best by Newest by Oldest

Why is everybody making a problem of this Russian lad? I don’t like Russia, the Russian gouverment is one big bag of lies yes I know that, but what does tis lad has to do with that? Throw him into the car and then we should judge.


Magny Cours 2007 : Alonso’s pass on Heidfelt almost made me fall off my seat, that’s an overtaking manoeuvre! Or Kimi on Fisi Suzuka 2005! Work of art! Like an amazing goal. Montoya on Schumi in Brazil. I prefer to watch a race with only one trully special overtake than 20 meaningless moves.


Tea leaf : I’m not a Hamilton fan, I’m a Racing fan. And I actually quite like the top 3 (alo ham and vet). I don’t dislike any driver.


On the subject feeder series, Interestingly, Ferrari are considering combining DTM with either GP2 or FR3.5 for Raffaele Marciello, their top prospect of the moment in their development program. According to Luca Baldisserri:

“GP2, because it’s the same tracks as Formula 1 and the same tyres, so he can get used to the Pirelli behaviour.”

“World Series by Renault, which is a very good package, a lot of downforce, really good tyres with a lot of grip in the corners and a good championship.”

“And then I think there’s DTM as well. In terms of professional qualities of the teams, it’s the closest to Formula 1. And for a young driver, having the possibility to have some rhythm with a really organised and professional team is important.”

Source: Autosport.


This guy is a total unknown, and is massively unproven – how he’s had a chance to demonstrate his ‘talent’ is a mystery to me. Can’t help but think of Perry McCarthy’s excellent book about the struggles of a real proven talent to make it to F1.


His record really is nothing special. It’s not bad but drivers got better results than him in all his seasons so far. He’s won a handful of very junior races.


I think google will cure all your mysteries. Do a look up against your non-mysterious talent track record.


Do you mean unknown to you?!? He has been with red bull for 3 years, I think toro rosso know what they are doing.


Kvyat the new Scott Speed or the new Sebastien Bourdais?

influence over pure talent.


BOU was a true sad case in 2008 – 4 points vs VET 35 points. One can have many excuses, but the gap was devastating.

I hope Kvyat will be neither. Hope he will be the new Vettel.

The assumption that if a Russian driver is chosen, it is only because of money is insulting to put it mildly. And I am not even Russian.


1. He did sixteen laps at Silverstone test? ~2.5 seconds off the pace.

2. Russian driver, first Russian GP next year.

3. Bernie Ecclestone.

4. Sochi Olympics prep already being remarked on as one of the biggest $ frauds in history.

5. The only other question that needs answering is….How much does he weigh?


You really missed the mark. He is very talented, comes off as very professional and smart, and is beating Sainz jr to a pulp in GP3. Both Sainz and Da Costa have not been as promising this season as last season. Out of those three, they made the best decision IMO, Kyvat has potental which makes the skip from GP3 to F1 worth the risk.

Yes he was off the pace at the YDT but like you said he only had 16 laps, which makes his effort impressive and your point useless. Plus he has impressed in other ways, technical understanding being key. I really think his being Russian has little to do with it, he has been part of red bull since 2010. They know him, and toro rosso made their decision based on that. You don’t know him so your basing your info on that…

With all the complaints, mine included, about pay drivers and talent not getting into F1 it’s sad that a great young driver with real potental has been mislabeled.


This guy has nothing to do with the people’s stereotype for him being Russian. He might have been from any other country, right? He is making his own luck and as long as he ‘s got the second seat the RB top guys see him be more talented than those 2, that’s how it is.


For Da Costa, read Brendon Hartley. The RB programme is a tough world and you are only as good as your last race.


Kvyat has certainly caught the eye, but I wasn’t expecting him to get any further than a young guns test for another couple of years. Sainz or da Costa would’ve been slightly safer choices, but I don’t think either of them would’ve had an easy time so in a sense perhaps Red Bull are right to back the horse they truly believe in.

Both this decision and Kvyat put me in mind of Kimi Raikkonen’s rapid ascent to F1. For sure, he won’t have an easy year, but his talent may well shine through.


Thought this would be an appropriate.


You should hear the remix “From Russia with money” coming soon to all dodgy record stores near you 🙂


appropriate song.


James, Why does RBR (still) have it’s development programme in the first place please?

Toro Rosso serves that role for RBR and Toro Rosso themselves can pick any driver they want.

I don’t understand why they keep this costly programme alive?


So that they can give the seat to someone like Kvyat. He IS part of the RB junior team.


James It’s very interesting that teams perhaps don’t seem as focused on GP2 as the benchmark for new signing -is the frenetic driving we’ve seen early on in the careers of Maldonado and Grosjean weighing heavily on teams minds? Really surprised by Red Bull not signing Sainz Jnr- his times were stronger than anyone and immediately on it.

In the scheme of teams like a Torro Rosso, it’s not such a bad thing to have a rookie- because with the 2014 rules reset- a good young gun can upset the established order if he has the reflexes / sharpeness to handle additional ERS usage and a very different handling car to this year. There is less development pressure than a bigger team too.

As for JEV – I think there was very little between him an Dan and he was really unlucky to miss out- why will Red Bull do if he shines brighter than Ricciardo — that’s more the question to my mind.


I think GP2 has been quite the racket for Bernie & friends. All control parts sold at great expense to the teams by FOM affiliates. The result is that nearly all drivers are pay drivers in the traditional sense, not development drivers. The top team’s development programmes prefer FR3.5 as there is more track time, as well as less expense.


Not totally suprised Da Costa didn’t get the nod as he’s had a disapointing season.

I am suprised by the selection though. Far too young in my eyes and also questionable talent. Seems there may be other motives at play here.


Questionable talent? Too young? He’s shown more promise in junior classes of racing than Alonso did, and is joining F1 at a slightly older age than Alonso did.


So i recognise this comparison does not take account of team strength, but lets look at some basic GP3 results here

AFdC – 2 full seasons: 13th, 3rd

Sainz Jr – 1 season (MW Arden):9th

DK – 1 season (MW Arden): 2nd

So DK has wiped the floor with his teammate and smashed AFdC. Compared to Sainz, DK has two wins to none, twice the podiums, and more than double the points. Seems like a no-brainer….unless I’m missing something…..which i probably am


Hi James – have you heard opinions on da Costa’s technical ability? Interesting that Red Bull/Toro Rosso pointed out Kvyat’s good feedback after tests, and then if you consider that da Costa has struggled this year in WSR often saying he can’t find the right balance with the car. Perhaps this was a key issue in the decision making?


Who is this guy? I hope he doesn’t get the Jaime treatment end of next year.

One driver I really would like to see in F1 sooner than later is Red Bull junior Beitske Visser. She is a fantastic driver and has massive potential. She has done much better than her male colleagues. She has even beaten Ralf Schumacher in karting.


I´ve read in a post that James Allen made that in the end Formula 1 is all about the money.

I love this sport since a child, and I refused to think that. Today I firmly agree on that.




Could someone analyses all the glitches that Felix da Costa had this year in his car (RB car), and there would be so many answers.

There´s so much money involved that all the sport is becoming vicious. It´s aal about the money.


…”I don´t care too much for money. Money can´t buy me love…”

Wait! Hold it right there Fab 4. Money can still buy plenty of F1 seats. That´s what matters


Toro Rosso manage to retain their reputation as the team to make radical driver line up decisions!

Based on the twitter feed of Felix da Costa is seems as if he expected the announcement to be coming his way as little as an hour before the news.

In the spirit of the bizarre silly season, and somewhat prompted by the provocative tweets coming from Fernando Alonso in recent days. Is it possible a deal is being put together for Vettel to move to Ferrari in 2014? Kvyat’s announcement is a prelude to bigger announcements once the 2013 championship is sealed.


Whatever happened to actually being a man first before getting to F1? This kid is way to young and the difference between GP3 and F1 is huge. Unless he’s a serious talent on the level of Hamilton or Raikkonen, his career will be over before it begins.


This ‘man’ talk is just hilarious.

Alonso was 19 when he entered F1 btw. So was Vettel and Button. They are all F1 champions.


Last I checked, Vettel did “OK” compared to HAM and RAI, his pre-F1 record was splatter with defeat from Hamilton and Di Resta alike, and he was 19 when scored his first championship point. Actually, he just started to look like a man this year.

I know, there are still people who believe that the 4-time consecutive WDC elect has no serious talent. But those people need to have their brains checked.

To be honest, I don’t care what the driver is like – young, old, white, black, green, blue, red, male, female, earthy, alien, rich, poor, sunny, shady, as long as he/she is fast and the engineers can fit him/her in under the rules, it’s good.


The RB programme is brutal isn’t it?

The way I see it, they are only interested in spectacularly good drivers and they think they’ve seen that in Kvyat, maybe they have.

JEV and Riciardo are just being used, JEV as a baseline and Riciardo as a points scorer/wing man to Vettel and then maybe to the next no: 1 in the team.

I don’t think either of them will ever sit at the top RB table


Why don’t they get rid of Vergne and put da Costa or Sainz to the other seat? Or is it easier to compare young driver against established one?


With complex new tech on the cars next year you need some experience. Would be crazy to have two rookies in a year like 2014


Apparently Daniil Kyvat and Antonio Felix Da Costa are flatmates….. Awkward.


I wonder is Kvyat will be asking Da Costa to do the housework while he’s off racing in F1 🙂


And remind him to put out the cat!


Some people are quick to jump to financial conclusions. On the basis of Kyvat’s results, this guy doesn’t seem anything like Sauber’s Sirotkin. His results are strong, especially in F3.

His technical feedback to Toro Rosso during the Young Drivers Test last July is also a good indicator. Good results in different championships with different tyres, can certainly not be a bad thing as the sport looks to at its most protective over its tyres as it’s ever been.

Could it turn out to be too much, soon for him next year? Of course it could. But right now, this guy seems exciting. Have to feel bad for da Costa though. Hopefully he can recover from such a decision and perhaps be in F1 in 2015.


As the story says, he’s the young driver the older ones in Red Bull programme really rate, as we said a few months ago. All the noise was about da Costa and Sainz, but Kvyat had serious support internally


Do you mean internal support from Horner and Webber?…i mean coming from the MW Arden squad as well, currently second in GP3 in their team. i would say that they have great info on him and rate him very high over the last season?


But surely James the best bet, given the new regs and Kvyat’s youth would be to give Da Costa a shot and send Kvyat to GP2. In 2 years the guy will still only be 21!

Which for me reinforces the view of many here that this is money/nationality related. I don’t doubt the kid is a massive talent, but why so soon in his career? Oh there’s a Russian GP next year.


In Melbourne, Kvyat will be the same age nearly to the day as Vettel was in Indianapolis 2007..

If you are good enough, you are old enough


If all goes well for Red Bull it could be a win on the performance side as well as the marketing side.

From that perspective it makes a lot of sense why they signed him.


I don’t see what the new regs have to do with anything. Kyvat is at no more of a disadvantage with them than is Da Costa, or Alonso. Nor is he that young, he’ll be older than Alonso was when he started driving in F1.

Top Tags
SEARCH Red Bull Racing
JA ON F1 In association with...
Multi award winning Formula One photographer
Multi award winning Formula One photographer

Sign up to receive the latest F1 News & Updates direct to your inbox

You have Successfully Subscribed!