Ex-F1 racer Daniil Kvyat to make NASCAR Cup debut at Indianapolis

The former Toro Rosso, Red Bull and AlphaTauri F1 racer will join the Dutch-owned Team Hezeberg squad to drive the #26 Toyota Camry at Indianapolis, and subsequent road courses at Watkins Glen (21 August) and the Charlotte Roval playoff race on 9 October.

Team Hezeberg, a joint effort between former racer Toine Hezemans, Dutch entrepreneur Ernst Berg and Josh Reaume, fielded 1997 F1 world champion Jacques Villenueve in this year’s Daytona 500 in its #27 Ford Mustang.

It has also run Loris Hezemans at the Circuit of the Americas and Road America in the #27 Ford, with the two-time EuroNASCAR champion due to make his third appearance with the car this weekend.

“I’m very happy to be able to make my NASCAR Cup Series debut at Indianapolis,” said Kyvat.

“I have always been passionate about racing in NASCAR, the top form of motorsport in the United States.

“NASCAR has always been intriguing to me, as it is a pure form of motorsport to me.

“I’m looking forward to being successful in this form of motorsport and I hope to contend for wins and championships in the future.

“I can’t thank NASCAR, Josh Reaume, Toine Hezemans, Ernst Berg, and everybody at Team Hezeberg enough for the opportunity.

Daniil Kvyat, AlphaTauri

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

“The guys at the shop have been working tirelessly to prepare machine and myself for this experience.

“It will be my first time at Indianapolis, and I am looking forward to seeing it in person. From what I have seen on video, Indianapolis is a challenging circuit, but I’m looking forward to that challenge, along with competing in the NASCAR Cup Series.”

Kvyat, who managed three podiums in his F1 career, served as Alpine’s reserve driver during the 2021 season.

The 28-year-old had planned to switch to sportscars this year in the World Endurance Championship, but was left without a drive following the withdrawal of his G-Drive Racing LMP2 team from the WEC amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Read Also:

He will be joined in the field at Watkins Glen by 2007 F1 champion Kimi Raikkonen, who will race a Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet.

Reaume said he believed NASCAR is a great destination for Kvyat’s next motorsports venture.

“Daniil is a very talented driver with an amazing amount of open wheel experience,” he said.

“In my opinion, NASCAR is a great spot for Daniil to end up at, especially with the Next-Gen’s capabilities throughout many styles of racing.

“I’m looking forward to being a part of Daniil’s transition to NASCAR, and helping him however I possibly can.”