19-year old Russian Daniil Kvyat has earned his FIA Super Licence, and is therefore permitted to race in Formula One. Kvyat drove a two-year old Toro Rosso car in Italy last Friday in order to gain the experience required before a Super Licence can be issued.
One of the ways a driver can earn a Super Licence is by driving at least 300km in fairly recent Formula One machinery. Kvyat covered just over 400km by completing 102 laps of the Misano circuit in Italy, which gives him more than the required experience. His Super Licence has thus been issued. In evaluating Kvyat’s Super Licence application, the FIA will also have taken into account his other racing experience – Kvyat recently won the 2013 GP3 championship, which will certainly have helped his cause to obtain a Super Licence.
Now that he is licensed to take part in Grand Prix weekends, Kvyat can begin to integrate himself into the race team at Toro Rosso. He will do that by taking part in the first practice session at this weekend’s United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas. He will also drive in first practice for next week’s season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix.
A few weeks ago it was announced that Russian Daniil Kvyat will drive for Toro Rosso in the 2014 Formula One World Championship. Before that can happen, he needs an FIA Super Licence – the coveted licence that allows racing drivers to participate in Formula One race weekends.
Kvyat needs his Super Licence with some urgency. Although he’s not set to actually race in F1 until the Australian Grand Prix on 16 March 2014, Kvyat’s Toro Rosso team wants to put him in one of their cars for the first practice session of each of the last two races in 2013. The reason for that is fairly obvious: every lap he does in an F1 car is a step forward in his development as an F1 driver, so the sooner they can start, the better.
Although he’s certainly no slouch as a racing driver – Kvyat secured the 2013 GP3 title last weekend in Abu Dhabi in his first season in the series – he has precious little experience behind wheel of a Formula One car. Kvyat’s only F1 outing to date came in this year’s Young Driver Test at Silverstone in July, but he did not complete enough running to earn a Super Licence – a driver must complete 300km in reasonably current F1 machinery before a Super Licence will be granted.
The next Formula One race is in Austin, Texas on 17 November. Friday practice (in which Kvyat is hoping to take part) is on 15 November. That gives him just 9 days to secure a Super Licence if he is to drive a Toro Rosso at the Circuit of the Americas in just over a week’s time.
To that end, Daniil Kvyat will drive a 2011 Toro Rosso car in Italy this week in order to cover the required 300km before his Super Licence will be issued. Assuming all goes according to plan, Kvyat should be behind the wheel of a 2013 Toro Rosso in Austin for Free Practice 1 on 15 November.
What has been generally accepted for weeks is now official: Daniel Ricciardo will drive for Red Bull alongside Sebastian Vettel in 2014. The 24-year old Australian will take the place of Mark Webber, who leaves Formula One at the end of 2013 after a 12-year career including seven seasons at Red Bull.
Ricciardo is the recipient of what is truly the chance of a lifetime. He will race alongside arguably the top current F1 driver at the current top F1 team. He will have the opportunity to win races and compete for the world championship. On the other side of the coin, he will have no valid excuses should he fail to perform.
Ricciardo is the second product of the Toro Rosso team to be signed for Red Bull – Sebastian Vettel himself was the first. Toro Rosso exists partly as a training ground for Red Bull drivers, and so far the system has worked well, albeit briefly. Vettel won a race for Toro Rosso in 2008, to-date the only Toro Rosso victory, before replacing the retiring David Coulthard at Red Bull in 2009 and taking that team’s maiden victory at the 2009 Chinese Grand Prix.
Daniel Ricciardo has not had the same level of success as Vettel did at Toro Rosso, but that is understandable considering that the team is not as competitive as it was back in 2008. Nonetheless, Ricciardo is highly rated and expected to excel in his new team next season.
Red Bull’s new driver is understandably thrilled at being signed to drive for the world champion team. Ricciardo said after the announcement:
“I feel very, very good at the moment and obviously there’s a lot of excitement running through me. Since joining F1 in 2011, I hoped this would happen and over time the belief in me has grown; I had some good results and Red Bull has decided that this is it, so it’s a good time.”
Ricciardo made it clear that he knows what is expected of him as a Red Bull driver, saying, “Next year I’ll be with a Championship-winning team, arguably the best team, and will be expected to deliver. I’m ready for that. I’m not here to run around in tenth place, I want to get the best results for myself and the team.”
Despite his excitement, Ricciardo remains focused on the task of securing results for his current team, Toro Rosso, in 2013: “My aim is to finish this season as strong as possible, for myself and Scuderia Toro Rosso. Then, once the off-season is here, I’ll be fully focused on next year and the next stage of my career.”
|10||14||Di Resta||Force India||1:31.797||1.381||40|
|20||21||Van der Garde||Caterham||1:33.804||3.388||40|
|3||2||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1:32.789||1.035||22|
|4||15||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes||1:32.822||1.068||16|
|8||1||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Racing-Renault||1:33.213||1.459||20|
|11||14||Paul di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||1:33.493||1.739||18|
|20||21||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham-Renault||1:36.078||4.324||23|
|22||3||Fernando Alonso||Ferrari||No time||2|