Daniil Kvyat says that his return to Formula 1 and with Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda is an example of ‘never give up hope’ after being dropped from the team during the 2017 season.
The Russian driver returns to Formula 1 after a year away from the sport, spending the 2018 season on the sidelines with Scuderia Ferrari as their simulator driver.
Kvyat’s career in F1 looked over after being dropped by the team towards the end of the 2017 season, but Toro Rosso called for him to return for the 2019 season, where he will race alongside rookie Alexander Albon.
Kvyat says he feels great to be back with the team and enjoyed his time working with Ferrari last year by helping him keep in shape and in touch on what is going in F1 on the technical side.
“Let’s just say it’s great to be back and it proves you should never give up hope,” said Kvyat.
Last year, I enjoyed my time working with Ferrari, which helped me keep in good shape and in touch with what is going on in Formula 1 on the technical front.”
Despite an impressive start to his F1 career in 2014, which led to a seat at Red Bull for the 2015 season, Kvyat’s career at the top was cut short after four races in 2016 and was sent back to Toro Rosso in favor of Max Verstappen. Kvyat struggled to settle back into Toro Rosso, which ultimately led to his departure in 2017.
But with his return, Kvyat was asked whether he has changed or has matured since his subsequent drop from the team.
“I don’t want to say whether I’ve changed or not,” commented Kvyat. “I know there’s been a lot of speculation about this and whether I’ve matured or not and so on, but I prefer to let my driving on the track answer.
“I just want to get in the car and see what happens. There is plenty of work to do and four days on track in Barcelona before we go racing, which will be very important for everyone.”
The STR14 will be the first time both Kvyat and team-mate Albon will drive the Honda power-unit in F1. Kvyat has spent most of his F1 career racing with Renault engines, and a short spell with a year-old Ferrari engine in 2016. But Kvyat says after seeing Honda for the first time, that the Japanese group is ‘very motivated’ in developing a strong engine.
“I’ve been following how they are getting on quite closely. What I do know is they’re definitely very motivated.
“They’re pushing like hell and working really hard to achieve the best engine possible and that’s exactly what the team needs. As long as we work as one mechanism, push each other and always aim as high as possible, that will help.”