Daniil Kvyat has sent a reminder to the Red Bull decision-makers about his talent after a strong showing in his home event, the Russian Grand Prix.
The 26-year-old from Ufa has spent his seven years in F1 pinballing between the Toro Rosso/AlphaTauri and Red Bull teams and being without a drive altogether, which was the case in 2018.
The latter scenario is in danger of occurring again, with the Russian’s drive at AlphaTauri reported to be under threat as Red Bull look to promote Japanese F2 racer Yuki Tsunoda from their development programme – which would help relations with their engine supplier Honda.
Kvyat, however, did himself no harm by finishing P8 at Sochi, one place ahead of his team-mate Pierre Gasly who recently won the Italian Grand Prix.
And he took the opportunity to promote his own job prospects during his interview in the broadcast media pen afterwards, with Kvyat claiming he was “the best” and that his race had been “perfect”.
“Fantastic, I’m really happy. My home race couldn’t have gone any better,” said Kvyat, who is 14th in the F1 drivers’ World Championship standings and capitalised on making a comparatively late pit-stop, switching from the hard to the medium tyres.
“I wanted the strategy, I wanted to go strong. I was confident in the morning that we could make things work and in fact we did. This is the kind of racing I like.
“When I saw [Lewis] Hamilton behind me and was able to keep him behind for a couple of laps, I thought the pace in the race was amazing.
“Perfect – just a shame not being able to force [Esteban] Ocon into a mistake, otherwise I could have been P7. We were quicker but can’t complain. It’s hard to overtake in these modern cars.
“I know that if I get it right on Sunday I’m the best and I can fly. Sunday was exactly this day. I got everything right with my engineers – the set-up, the strategy. Once I was in clean air I felt ‘this is my race’.
“The car is there, the pace is there, so we have to keep pushing for the rest of the season and hopefully we can gain a position in the Championship.”