Red Bull Racing late on Monday confirmed that Formula 1 rising star Pierre Gasly will join the team in 2019 as the replacement for Daniel Ricciardo, who is leaving to join Renault.
Gasly currently drives for Red Bull feeder team Toro Rosso and his promotion to the top team was largely expected. He will race alongside current Red Bull driver Max Verstappen (shown below) in the new season.
Gasly only joined the F1 circuit at the tail end of the 2017 season and in the short time he has scored three top-ten finishes, including an impressive fourth place in the 2018 Bahrain Grand Prix. We'll remind you that the results were achieved mostly running Honda power units.
Gasly, like most F1 drivers on the grid, started out in karting before moving into the French F4 Championship in 2011. He then went on to Formula Renault 2.0, winning that title in 2013 and being promised to the Red Bull Junior Driver Program at the same time.
He then entered the 3.5 Renault series racing for Arden Motorsport before stepping up to GP2 in 2015 and becoming Red Bull Racing’s reserve driver. He won the 2016 GP2 Drivers’ Championship at the end of a thrilling season racing for the Prema Powerteam. In 2017 he competed in Japan’s Super Formula Championship, finishing runner-up while having already begun his F1 career that same year.
“I’m so excited to be joining this top team,” Gasly said in a statement. “It has been my goal to race for this team since I joined the Red Bull Junior Driver Program in 2013, and this incredible opportunity is another step forward in my ambition to win grands prix and compete for world championships.”
The news comes just days after current Renault driver Carlos Sainz was confirmed to fill the seat of the retiring Fernando Alonso at McLaren in 2019. Ricciardo is filling Sainz's seat at Renault.
It isn't clear yet who will fill Gasly's seat at Toro Rosso. There are also rumors that Williams' Lance Stroll could move to Force India now that his father owns the team, and that Kimi Räikkönen might step down from Ferrari to make way for Sauber's Charles Leclerc.