Gasly/Kvyat Toro Rosso swap: F1 fans give their verdicts

Pierre Gasly's long-awaited Formula 1 debut will come at the Malaysian Grand Prix, replacing Daniil Kvyat at Toro Rosso

Gasly/Kvyat Toro Rosso swap: F1 fans give their verdicts

Gasly has had to play the waiting game for his chance and impressive recent form in Japan's Super Formula has put him firmly in title contention a year after winning GP2.

Meanwhile Kvyat's career has continued to stall and he has scored just four points in his first full season back at Toro Rosso after Red Bull demotion in 2016.

F1 fans have been debating the merits of Gasly's promotion and the consequences of another blow to Kvyat's career. Here is a selection of comments from the Autosport Forum:

goingthedistance: It's overdue, but mid-season is a little unusual. I can't help but wonder if this is Red Bull getting in a little insurance for if/when it loses one or both of [Daniel] Ricciardo and [Max] Verstappen at the end of next year.

maximilian: Daniil's bad luck was the emergence of Verstappen. Red Bull's hand was more or less forced, due to the talent of the Dutchman, although at the time I also thought it was harsh to demote Kvyat after just a few races in the season, just one race after he had a podium finish.

I guess what Red Bull wanted to see was Kvyat to hunker down and this adversity to make him stronger. It wanted him to push Sainz, and to claw his way back into being the top contender for the RBR seat, if and when it would be available.

Instead, since then Kvyat scored a grand total of eight points over a season and a half - compared to ninety points by Sainz during the same period. No matter what else may be going on, but those are pretty damning statistics.

jjcale: It's complicated with Kvyat - he clearly has a lot of talent...but he has had a big part in his downfall. Still, he is easily the most mistreated driver in F1 in recent times. I hope he is retained for next year - [Helmut] Marko still owes him as far as I am concerned.

Join the Kvyat/Gasly debate

SonJR: The thing with Gasly is if they were 100% sure of him, they'd have put him in for 2017 from the get-go. Or Red Bull could've done it during the summer break or at any time before or after.

To evaluate him now just says that there's still doubt there. A weird double-sided argument I know, but it just strikes me as odd that even a GP2 title, Super Formula race wins and some F1 free practices wouldn't be enough and that Red Bull is actually saying: we want to see you race in F1 first...

DaanF1: Kvyat hasn't shown anything special in this season and last year. It's a shame. I always considered him a fast driver, but something went wrong. Probably something to do with pressure.

GTA: It's all part of the system at Red Bull though. The best survive and the weak leave. If Red Bull had persisted with Sebastien Buemi, Jaime Alguersuari, and Jean-Eric Vergne, F1 could have missed Ricciardo, Verstappen and Carlos Sainz Jr today.

TheRacingElf: I don't really get it, they do this to prepare Gasly for next year but why would you compromise your other driver for next year, Kvyat, when Sainz is leaving anyway? Only because Sainz should be able to score some more points? Red Bull never really cared about where Toro Rosso finished in the constructors' championship, so why would it now?

messy: Part of me thinks Red Bull treated Kvyat appallingly and he never stood a hope of recovery when it demoted him down to Toro Rosso. He wasn't at all bad in the Red Bull, was he? He maybe lacked Ricciardo's underlying pace to the tune of a few tenths all season, but he scored a lot of points which is ironic as that's exactly what he hasn't been doing ever since!

The other part thinks that he's lucky to have lasted this long. That he's been in a perma-sulk since it happened, has been performing woefully for eighteen months, and massively deserves the boot.

MJB5990: I still think Kvyat will have a seat at Toro Rosso next year. But it needed to give Gasly a taste, and they can't exactly drop Sainz at this point considering he's the one scoring their points.

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