- Toro Rosso
Sainz secures Toro Rosso drive for 2015
Carlos Sainz has been confirmed as a Toro Rosso driver for 2015, joining Max Verstappen in an all-rookie line-up.
Initially Verstappen was supposed to join Daniil Kvyat at the team next season, but when Sebastian Vettel left Red Bull for Ferrari, Kvyat took his place and opened up a space at Toro Rosso. Sainz was in the running alongside 2014 driver Jean-Eric Vergne and GP3 champion Alex Lynn, but got the nod this week following a test with Red Bull in Abu Dhabi.
Sainz is the reigning Formula Renault 3.5 champion and feels ready to make the step into the top flight.
"I am really happy to have landed the drive with Scuderia Toro Rosso," he said. "Ever since I have been part of Red Bull's Young Driver Programme, this has been my aim and I want to thank Red Bull for putting their faith in me. I have had a very successful season in World Series by Renault this year and now I am looking forward to taking the step up to Formula One.
"I tested for a day with Toro Rosso last year and I liked the atmosphere in the team. In the next few months I will be working hard on my preparation, ready to get in the cockpit in Jerez for the first test of next year. It will be nice to make my "official" debut as a Formula One driver in my home country!"
Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost added: "With Carlos Sainz joining Max Verstappen in our driver line-up next year, we continue the Toro Rosso tradition of providing youngsters from the Red Bull Junior Driver Programme with their first steps in Formula One. I have watched Carlos progress through the junior categories, always improving as he moved higher up the ladder, culminating in a well-deserved win in this year's World Series.
"However, I also remember the day's testing he did with us at Silverstone in 2013 in the STR8. He really surprised me and his engineers that day, with his mature approach and his speed."