Red Bull’s Motorsport advisor Helmut Marko has said he learned over Daniel Ricciardo‘s departure from Aston Martin Red Bull Racing to join Renault Sport Formula One Team when Daniil Kvyat called him about it.
Ricciardo will leave to join Renault for the 2019 Formula 1 season, which opened up a seat for Pierre Gasly to make the step up from Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda.
Gasly’s move opens up a seat at Toro Rosso, in which Daniil Kvyat will take next year as he returns to the sport after a year away.
Kvyat has spent 2018 with Scuderia Ferrari as the team’s development and simulator driver. He was previously a driver at Toro Rosso before he was dropped from the Red Bull programme before the end of 2017.
Marko told Autosport.com that he has kept in contact with Kvyat and revealed that he informed Marko and Red Bull about Ricciardo’s departure from the team.
“We have been in contact,” said Marko.
“He was informed about Ricciardo’s move before it was announced, so he rang me before Ricciardo did. But we had been in contact before that already.
“He’s more mature, he’s more settled, and I think we will see the fast Kvyat as we have in memory. He’s more hungry, and he saw how difficult it is to get a seat in F1.
“Now he starts everything new, there are all chances.”
Kvyat struggled in his second stint at the Italian team, after he was demoted from Red Bull four races in the 2016 season. Max Verstappen replaced him at Red Bull and won in his first race with the team at the Spanish Grand Prix.
Marko said that he understands why Kvyat struggled to find his feet in 2017, before he was dropped after the United States Grand Prix in favour of Gasly and Brendon Hartley.
“We saw it when he was driving last year. It was a spiral.
“He told me the reasons why things happened. His whole environment is a much better one.”
Kvyat spent his 2018 season with Ferrari and Marko feels that it has learned during his time at the Maranello team.
“It helps, he got a much wider view of what F1 is. A very good education,” Marko added.
“I am confident. The Honda engine, and more or less half the chassis from RBR, it could be a surprise for a lot of people.”