Current Daniil Kvyat

Daniil Vyacheslavovich Kvyat or Danny Kvyat to you and I seemed to come as a shock to some as Toro Rosso's choice for a race seat that prompted all sorts of money accusations however if people had been paying attention then it might have been less of a shock.

With Ricciardo being promoted to the A-Team it was only logical that Toro Rosso were going to promote one of their youth squad to the race seat and whilst Kvyat was not at the front of the queue in the fame stakes he certainly got there in the results stakes. At the begining of 2013 he was third in line to the throne sitting firmly behind the ever popular 'oh-my-god-he's-a-future-world-champion' Felix Da Costa and the 'oh-my-god-he's-the-talented-son-of-a-rally-driving-champ' Carlos Sainz Jr. Da Costa was to run with the big boys in the 3.5 series, Sainz Jr was to run in GP3 with races in the 3.5 series when he could whilst Danny was to run in GP3 and as a none points scorer in European F3. Da Costa proceded to throw away his hard earned reputation with a string of mediocre results and as the season went on he looked more and more out classed by Magnussen and Van Dorne. Sainz Jr went at it like a wild man and never failed to look quick, however he was a complete magnet for accidents and most of the time you were watching him coming back through the field after having a nose cone taken off. Our friend Kvyat on the other hand played the slowly slowly catchy monkey game with a quiet but firm start to his GP3 season he kept himself in contention whilst his team sorted out issues with his tyres and then when it came to the start of the second half of the season in Spa he went into overdrive. In a GP3 season that has seen around 10 different winners and the winners of the feature races just falling off the pace in the sprint race Kvyat turned it on its head by winning the last 3 feature races and coming through the field for points finishes in the sprint races. At some points he looked Vettel like untouchable. If you look at that and compare it with what Da Costa and Sainz Jr were doing at the time it shouldn't be a shock to anyone that Toro Rosso decided he was the guy to promote.

Its no doubt that 2014 will be a tricky year for him in F1, although the commentators pronouncing his name will have just as tricky a time (The V is silent apparently). He's come in with brand new rules, very little track time and is up against a much under rated teammate in Jean Eric Vergne who might just have a point to prove. Also as Kyvat has spent the last 2 years winning everything in sight (GP3 Champion in 2013, Formula Renault 2.0 champion in 2012) it will take some time to adjust to fighting in the middle of the pack. Doesn't seem to be the best qualifyer in the world but he does seem to be very cool and calm under pressure and if you give him a good car he gets the best out of it. He also has the Vettel like ability of coming good just as its squeeky bum time.

No doubt you'll spend most of the year hearing about how he is the second Russian to race in F1 and that he'll be looking forward to his home race, however Kvyat was actually born in Bashkortostan which is a soverign state and a subject of Russia. So its all a bit Scotland/Britian which makes him Russia's answer to Paul Di Resta (although he'd prefer you to say Jackie Stewart). He was only born in April 1994 (only about a week before the death of Senna) which makes him not even 20 yet which always leaves the worry that he might crack under the pressure of it all.

It could be the Kvyat just becomes another name on the Red Bull failure list but don't think for a minute he hasn't earned his place in the team. I have a sneeky feeling he'll do better than a lot of people think he will do.

What do people think? Another Vettel or another Jamie Alguersauri?
Too soon. Typical RB move (helped by serious Russian money) and will be disregarded after 1 or 2 seasons unfortunately like Buemi or Alguesarri... Sad as he has potential but he needed a little more maturity with a WSR or GP2 year... But of course, the Russian GP is on this year... ! :(
I do think that maybe the Russian GP had a little influence on the decision but I still think he was the best performer in the Red Bull youth system and I do think he has something about him that could mean he does well. I expect him to start slowly and come on strong come the second half of the season.

Having said that I thought JEV was the next big thing when he came into F1 and he's done his damned best to look distinctly average so I guess we'll see.
Jean Eric Vergne and Ricciardo have both been a major disappointment in my opinion, there was too much hype around both of them, when they were announced.
Jean Eric Vergne and Ricciardo have both been a major disappointment in my opinion, there was too much hype around both of them, when they were announced.

It is part of the Red Bull marketing strategies! I do rate Riccardo, like I did rate Buemi more than Alguerssari. Having said that, only the best stay on at Red Bull so you will never see an average driver graduate with RB. They are from decent + to A-list! I am curious to see how Kvyat does this year but I am expecting a lot of mistakes and erratic judgements. I might be wrong. :)
So which of us predicted Kvyat getting 8th on the grid in his first qualifying session? Hands up?

He did a solid job in qualifying then held he position during the race. It will be hard to stand out this year. He is unlikely to overtake given a weaker car. He could try a strategy with one fewer stop (Perez did this to gain attention from McLaren).
I have a feeling that this season there will be more single stopping races than for the past few years. Which makes using the number of stops an unviable strategy.
Points for the young Russian once again.

Slightly blotted his copy book with the error in quali but to be honest if that braking error had happened on an empty track all he would have done was run a bit wide. He was just unfourtunate he couldn't avoid the Ferrari (he gave it a dam good go).

Good start though.
Very impressed with Kvyat so far. Keeps calm and has been around the top 10 in all races.

Favourite moment from China was when we were on his on board footage when he was behind Button and had Vergne behind him. Then we hear his team tell him to let JEV past. We flip away to some different footage for a short time and then come back to JEVs on board to find JEV is tucked up behind Button whilst Kvyat is past JB and clearing off down the road.

Now thats how to respond to one of those calls.
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How he didn't head anything losing it out the tunnel I'll never know.

Looks like he might be blessed with that little bit of luck you need to be a top class driver. As well as a lot of talent which he's obviously showing.
10 place grid drop (through no fault of his own), recovers to get on the rear wing of a Ferrari, has brake failure at 220mph and manages to catch it... yet he STILL beats his more experienced team-mate to the flag.

Very impressive.

And I used to rate Vergne too...
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