Red Bull’s Helmut Marko believes that Carlos Sainz was the “natural choice” to replace Daniil Kvyat at Toro Rosso.

Red Bull’s junior team are keeping their tradition of fielding young drivers in the hope that they can one day progress to the main team, like Daniel Ricciardo and Kvyat.

Sainz, 20, will race alongside 17-year-old Max Verstappen, who will become the youngest ever driver in Formula 1 history.

Sainz was preferred to the more experienced Jean-Eric Vergne, who is leaving the team after three seasons.

Marko said: “Carlos has been with the Red Bull Junior Team for a long time. He’s had some ups and downs, but he convinced us by winning the World Series Title- and especially by doing so with a record of seven wins” he told the Red Bull official site.

Helmut Marko

Helmut Marko

“Of course we were waiting to see how the championships were going. And then the test in Abu Dhabi in the Formula 1 car was the thing that really confirmed to us that he was the right man for the seat.

“He did 100 laps, the speed was good and the technical feedback was good. He’s done everything we expected so I’d say he was the natural choice.”

Sainz will be the second Spaniard on the grid, with Fernando Alonso.

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