Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost is convinced that it is only a matter of time before Daniil Kvyat returns to the form that saw him promoted to Red Bull Racing.
2016 has not been kind to the Russian driver, who was demoted to Toro Rosso after a torrid time at his home race in Sochi in which his first lap antics damaged team-mate Daniel Ricciardo’s car.
Days later, Kvyat received the phone call that Red Bull insist was a long time coming.
Back down in Toro Rosso, Kvyat has struggled to match team-mate Carlos Sainz, scoring just two points to the Spaniard’s 26.
Tost, though, believes it is not yet over for the 22-year-old, saying he will find his form and could yet stay on at Toro Rosso in 2017.
“I personally hope he will race with us because I am convinced that sooner or later he will show his real performance and he will come back with his speed,” Tost told Autosport.
“I can understand it [the lack of confidence] because it was a big rotation coming from Red Bull back to Toro Rosso.
“But on the other side Red Bull – which is the only company in the world which has two Formula 1 teams – gave him the possibility to stay in Formula 1 and continue racing, and he should see this from the positive side.”
Tost says the main aim now is helping Kvyat regain his confidence and was encouraged by his performance in the German GP where he raced from 19th on the grid to 15th at the chequered flag, just one place behind Sainz, who had started P13.
“He needs a good result to get his confidence back.
“I must say he did a very good race [in Germany]. In qualifying he was a little bit unlucky in the first corner, risked a little bit too much, came off the brakes and lost three tenths. That was why he didn’t make it into Q2.
“But his sector two and sector three times were very, very competitive.
“I just hope that at the next races he gets everything together, and we can provide him with a competitive, fast car. Once he has a good result the confidence will come back.
“We all know Daniil can do a very good job – he won the GP3 championship, he won many races there, and he was on the podium in China [in F1 in April].
“It cannot be he lost his driving abilities within a few months.”