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Toro Rosso replacement Gasly says 'I feel sorry for Kvyat' before Malaysian F1 GP

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Toro Rosso replacement Gasly says 'I feel sorry for Kvyat' before Malaysian F1 GP
Sep 28, 2017, 6:15 PM

Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly expressed his excitement before the Formula 1 Malaysian Grand Prix as he replaces Daniil Kvyat for the next two races ...

Red Bull junior Pierre Gasly expressed his excitement before the Formula 1 Malaysian Grand Prix as he replaces Daniil Kvyat for the next two races at Toro Rosso.

Gasly, who is a regular in the Japanese Super Formula series, has been drafted in by Toro Rosso to evaluate his performance in F1 for a possible 2018 seat.

In the team's announcement on Tuesday, team principal Franz Tost criticised Kvyat, stating: "For a variety of reasons, some of them due to technical problems, but others being mistakes of his own making, Daniil Kvyat has not really shown his true potential so far this year, which is why we are standing him down for the next races."

During the Thursday press conference preceding the Malaysian GP, Gasly expressed that he felt sorry for Kvyat, whose future at Toro Rosso is unclear, but the 23-year-old Russian will miss at least the next two grands prix.

"I haven't talked to [Kvyat] yet but unfortunately that’s how it works in this sport and being in my position, before I came to F1, I was waiting for this chance and then I had to take the seat of someone else," he said.

"Of course I feel sorry for him, I think he’s a really good driver, talented and unfortunately it’s happening and I’m going to take his seat but I’m pretty sure we will see him back on the grid at some point maybe. We will see what’s going to happen in the near future."

Driving alongside team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr, who has gained 48 points this season, Kvyat has gained just four in comparison. He may return for the USA GP at Austin (Oct. 22) as the race clashes with the Super Formula final, which Gasly will contest.

"At the moment I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen in the next couple of weeks, so I’m just focusing, fully focusing on the weekend, trying to do my best, learn as quickly as possible," continued Gasly.

"It’s a great opportunity for me to start next to Carlos who is on top of his game at the moment. So really good benchmark for me and I’ll try to learn as quickly as possible, focus on the weekend and then we’ll see what’s going to happen in the next few weeks a bit later.

"At the moment, I don’t know how many races I’m going to do in F1 so there is nothing confirmed.

"The team told me to focus on this weekend and try to do my best. I’ve been competitive in lower series, I’ve won the EuroCup in two litres, finished second behind Carlos in 3.5, I won the GP2 and they sent me to Japan this year and I’m fighting for the championship with one race to go. The pace will come. I think Formula One is brand new for me, it’s my first GP but there is no real target.

"For me, as you say, I’m living the dream at the moment. It’s pretty hectic since Tuesday.

"Everything’s going on and I’m just really excited about this last race. For me, I’m sure I will remember this weekend for the rest of my life. When you have such a dream coming true, to do it on the last Malaysian GP… I don’t know if we’re going to come back one day, probably on this track but for sure it’s a moment that I will remember for the rest of my life.

"Of course I knew there were things going on with Red Bull but I didn’t know exactly what and then I travelled from Japan on Monday, I was racing last weekend in Super Formula in Sugo and then I travelled from Tokyo to Malaysia on Monday and then when I got here I received a text saying that I might be driving this weekend.

"I got really excited about it. Of course, I tried to sleep on Monday night, even though it was a bit difficult with all the excitement and then Tuesday morning I had the confirmation that it was confirmed and official and I was going to drive; amazing moment and [this is] great news," said Gasly.

Sainz unhappy to miss another FP1 session

Though Sainz will be leaving Toro Rosso for Renault in 2018, he expressed his own excitement that Gasly will join him for a part of the last leg of this F1 season.

"I think he deserves his chance in Formula One. He has done everything right to be here and I’m also sure Red Bull wouldn’t put anyone into our car that isn’t capable of being on the pace straight away and scoring points and helping the team, no? So extremely happy for him.

"I’ve raced him in World Series, I know how fast he is, I know the big talent he is so very happy for him."

Yet Sainz wasn't happy about the prospect of missing FP1 again, for Red Bull junior Sean Gelael. Gelael was already planned to take part in two FP1 sessions but Gasly is in need of track time as well. As a result, Sainz will sit the Malaysian GP FP1 session out.

"Let’s say that I’m not happiest man, knowing that I will, for the second consecutive time, miss FP1," said Sainz.

"Obviously at Singapore it turned out to be good because we still managed to get into Q3 and P4 but in a tougher weekend like Malaysia when I expect to have more to do in FP1, FP2, FP3 but hopefully like in Singapore we can do our best and come back strong like we did there."

Do you agree with Gasly's comments on Kvyat - should Kvyat be retained for 2018? Have your say in the comment section below.
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Series Formula 1
Drivers Carlos Sainz Jr. Shop Now , Pierre Gasly