Toro Rosso will have one of the youngest driver line-ups in 2015 after the team confirmed Max Verstappen will partner Daniil Kvyat.
The Red Bull Junior Team revealed last week that Verstappen, who will turn 17 on September 30, have joined the squad, but Toro Rosso went a step further on Monday by handing him a race seat for the upcoming F1 season.
The highly-rated Dutch teenager, the son of former F1 driver Jos who claimed two podiums during his Benetton days, is currently competing in the Formula 3 European Championship and lies second after nine wins.
Verstappen will become the youngest F1 driver next year and he will partner Russian Kvyat, who turned 20 in April this year.
“First of all, I would like to thank Dr. Helmut Marko and Red Bull for all their trust and giving me the chance to make my Formula debut in 2015 with Scuderia Toro Rosso. Ever since I was seven years old, Formula 1 has been my career goal, so this opportunity is truly a dream come true,” Verstappen told the official Toro Rosso website.
“There are several people that have helped me throughout the years and still support me to this day and I want to sincerely thank them. First of all a big thanks to my father Jos, who has always been by my side, day and night, year after year. Of course I’m very thankful for all my sponsors who’ve believed in my talent and supported me in these financially difficult times. I hope that I can maintain a wonderful collaboration with them as I embark on this exciting new phase in my career. I also want to thank my manager Raymond Vermeulen, for all his efforts in making this agreement possible. Finally, thanks to all the teams in the various karting and single-seater categories for their vital help and support. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”
“We’ve all worked tremendously hard to reach Formula 1 and I will give my absolute best to be successful in the pinnacle of motorsport. With the return of the Verstappen name to Formula 1, I hope we can relive old memories and I’m hoping to see many fans at all the Grand Prix circuits.”
The move means it’s the end of Jean-Eric Vergne’s STR career, but Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost described his new recruit as “one of the most skilled young drivers”.
“We are happy to welcome Max into the Toro Rosso family. It’s great to see how the Red Bull Junior Programme continues to find talented young drivers and gives them the opportunity to come into Formula 1,” he said.
“We consider Max to be as one of the most skilled young drivers of the new generation and we believe he has the necessary maturity and mental strength to take on this challenge successfully. This year he has already demonstrated how well he can cope under difficult conditions. For example, at the Norisring and N