Scuderia Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost believes that Daniil Kvyat is deserving of his drive for the 2017 Formula 1 season, after the Russian’s future was secured last weeke in Austin.
Kvyat made his F1 debut with Toro Rosso in 2013 before moving up to Red Bull’s senior team for the following season.
After a disastrous Russian Grand Prix in May that saw him crash into Sebastian Vettel twice, Kvyat was demoted from Red Bull back to Toro Rosso in a move designed to allow him to regain his form.
Kvyat endured a rough patch of form before appearing to find confidence following the summer break, leading to last Friday’s announcement that he would be remaining with Toro Rosso for the 2017 season.
Speaking to the official F1 website, Tost expressed his belief that Kvyat was deserving of his seat for 2017, as well as adding stability to the Toro Rosso operation.
“Red Bull decided to [announce in Austin] because we are convinced that Daniil is the right choice for 2017, and to end rumors and bring stability to the team for the last four races,” Tost said.
“Daniil deserves the drive next year, as he showed great performance in Singapore and was pretty competitive in Malaysia and Japan, with a car that has an engine on which development has stopped and which is short of 60 to 70 horsepower.”
Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly had been the only candidate to replace Kvyat for 2017, with Carlos Sainz Jr. also staying on with Toro Rosso in the second seat.
Toro Rosso currently sits seventh in the F1 constructors’ championship, having failed to stay ahead of McLaren due to the lack of development on its 2015-spec Ferrari engine.
Despite the circumstances that have perhaps limited the team’s potential in 2016, Tost admitted his disappointment when offering a review of Toro Rosso’s season.
“No it was not a good season for us. Absolutely not,” Tost said.
“It would be wrong for me to say that I am satisfied. P5 [in the constructors’] – then I would have gone home with a smile.”