F1 2019: Albon's deal to partner Kvyat at Toro Rosso announced

Toro Rosso-Honda has announced that Alexander Albon will be Daniil Kvyat's 2019 team-mate, filling what was effectively the final vacancy on next year's Formula 1 grid

F1 2019: Albon's deal to partner Kvyat at Toro Rosso announced

The news means 19 of the 20 seats have been revealed, with the official announcement of Lance Stroll's move to Racing Point Force India the only anomaly.

Albon had moved to the top of Toro Rosso's list in October, but the former Red Bull protege's situation was complicated by the fact he had already committed to joining the Nissan e.dams ABB FIA Formula E Championship team.

He therefore required extricating from that contract, a situation that caused consternation at Nissan - particularly as the push for him to move to F1 happened just as FE pre-season testing was beginning.

Autosport revealed earlier on Monday that the final obstacles to Albon parting with Nissan had been cleared, and official confirmation of that by Nissan was swiftly followed by Toro Rosso announcing Albon's signing.

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost said 22-year-old Albon's performance in Formula 2 this year - when he was third behind fellow F1-bound drivers George Russell and Lando Norris - led to his chance.

"Alexander had an impressive Formula 2 season in 2018," said Tost.

"He won four races and finished the championship third.

"The way he is able to overtake many of his rivals in the races shows that he is ready and matured to race in Formula 1.

"With Daniil and Alex we have two young, very strong and competitive drivers."

Albon's return to the Red Bull fold with Toro Rosso comes six years after he was dropped from the drinks firm's junior programme.

"It's such an amazing feeling to know that I'm in Formula 1 next year," he said.

"Throughout my single-seater career, I went through a few ups and downs.

"I was dropped by Red Bull in 2012, so from then I knew my road to Formula 1 was going to be a lot harder.

"I worked really hard and tried to impress every time I got in the car, and I have to say a big thank you to Red Bull and Dr [Helmut] Marko for believing in me and giving me a second chance.

"I've always been motorsport mad and since I first got in a car it's been my dream to be in Formula 1.

"To be given this opportunity is just incredible."

Toro Rosso goes into 2019 with an all-new F1 line-up in Kvyat and Albon.

Pierre Gasly is leaving to join the senior Red Bull Racing team in place of Renault-bound Daniel Ricciardo, while Brendon Hartley - another sometime Red Bull reject recalled by the company - is being dropped just over a year after getting his surprise F1 chance.

Nissan is expected to replace Albon with Oliver Rowland in its FE team.

2019 F1 driver line-up

Mercedes: Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas
Ferrari: Sebastian Vettel, Charles Leclerc
Red Bull-Honda: Max Verstappen, Pierre Gasly
Renault: Daniel Ricciardo, Nico Hulkenberg
Haas-Ferrari: Kevin Magnussen, Romain Grosjean
McLaren-Renault: Carlos Sainz Jr, Lando Norris
Force India-Mercedes: Sergio Perez, Lance Stroll*
Sauber-Ferrari: Kimi Raikkonen, Antonio Giovinazzi
Toro Rosso-Honda: Daniil Kvyat, Alexander Albon
Williams-Mercedes: Robert Kubica, George Russell

* Not yet officially announced

shares
comments
Fernando Alonso 'very impressed' with Jimmie Johnson's F1 run

Previous article

Fernando Alonso 'very impressed' with Jimmie Johnson's F1 run

Next article

Kimi Raikkonen has first Sauber F1 run since 2001 in Pirelli test

Kimi Raikkonen has first Sauber F1 run since 2001 in Pirelli test
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Daniil Kvyat , Alex Albon
Teams Toro Rosso
Author Matt Beer
The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition Plus

The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition

In 2017 new F1 technical regulations were supposed to add drama - and peg Mercedes back. STUART CODLING looks at the car which, while troubled, set the stage for the wide-bodied Formula 1 era

The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return Plus

The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Plus

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. BEN ANDERSON looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021