The 19-year-old will jump from GP3 to F1 next season, making his debut in Australia on March 16th, and will replace Red Bull-bound Daniel Ricciardo. He was a surprise choice to partner Jean-Eric Vergne at the Italian team, with many expecting Formula Renault 3.5 frontrunner Antonio Felix da Costa to make the step up.
Kvyat has already completed a number of outings in F1 machinery, most recently during first practice for the United States and Brazilian Grands Prix. He knows that his rookie year won’t be easy, but he is hoping that he will adapt quicker to the sport due to the dramatic new rule changes.
“There are a few things that are starting from the beginning again, but of course Formula 1 is still Formula 1 and it is still a very powerful and fast car,” he told Sky Sports. “So I would say it is a bit helpful from one side, but a Formula 1 car is still a Formula 1 car and it will never change.
“There are a lot of new regulations next year, but you have to learn as quickly as possible and I don’t think it is going to be a big problem. We just need to find a solution better than the others and hopefully we will be there. It is all about that.”
Discussing his FP1 runs at the end of the 2013 season, he said: “It was good to finish only two tenths off Daniel [Ricciardo] as he is a really experienced guy with a lot of speed in himself and it is good news and nice to know that I could end up quite close to him and from the data I was able to learn many things.
“Then in Brazil we had a really good run and it was very encouraging – I didn’t do too many laps but still ended up P8, so it is looking really promising so far.”
Looking ahead to his debut race, he says he isn’t counting down the days to the season opener at Albert Park but he is looking forward to it. “I wouldn’t say I am counting down the days – that would be the wrong approach, you cannot do that,” he added “You have to take every race as one race, you cannot just be thinking about one race. I see this as a long thing, it is a great challenge and I am really looking forward to it.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic