Daniil Kvyat insists that the shock of his sudden outing from Red Bull and demotion back down the grid to Toro Rosso is firmly in the past, and that he’s concentrating on using his current position to get better and better where it counts – out on track.
“I don’t live in a dream world, I live in reality and I’m just going to be pushing ****ing hard,” Kvyat told reporters in Monaco on Thursday when asked how he was coming to terms with the change.
“For sure, it wasn’t easy and it took a bit extra space from the brain because you have to think twice at times to understand, or perhaps you forget something or have to double check, but now everything seems quite normal and is quite comfortable so it’s not a problem.”
There was a sense that after what had happened, the Russian now felt that he didn’t have much more to lose and could finally speak his mind: “I’m not scared of anything at the moment any more. I say what I think and, if someone doesn’t like it, it’s okay.”
As he starts his comeback campaign, Kvyat was certainly impressive in Monaco in free practice on Thursday and finished the day fifth fastest behind only the two Red Bull and Mercedes cars.
“I think the feeling with the car is getting better and better all the time,” he said. “We know that the Toro Rosso car is nice and a good sharp car so we expected this kind of track to be good for us and that’s confirming itself today.
“I think we had quite a good Thursday and did many laps. I think we ticked most of the boxes today which is very good for the whole team.
“You are trying to find the limit, but we’re not quite there yet. It’s the same for everyone I guess but the car felt comfortable at the limit, usually you find it in qualifying and hopefully it’s going to be the case.
“Everything looks quite okay, quite good and straight out of the box I was feeling quite good and comfortable with the car, so we hope to maintain, and even improve, this feeling for Saturday because we know there are some areas there we can maximise ourselves, like many other teams.
“Thursdays in Monaco are never ideal so we’ll do our homework as well as possible and come back on Saturday in the best shape possible.
“I think we’re looking good for qualifying and, looking forward, I’m really hungry to make a good session on Saturday and I think we have the potential, so we want to make this car shine because it deserves to shine.”