Christian Horner says Daniil Kvyat will definitely be driving with the Red Bull Racing team in 2016, saying the only reason he wouldn't be is if the team pulls out of F1.
Kvyat was promoted to a Red Bull race drive for 2015 after an eye-catching maiden F1 season with the sister Toro Rosso outfit in 2014.
After an indifferent start to his time with the four-time championship winning team, Kvyat has enjoyed a series of strong results since the beginning of the European leg, most notably his maiden podium in Hungary, his lead-contesting pace in the initial slippery conditions of the United States Grand Prix and a faultless run to fourth most recently in Mexico.
However, though the Russian is ahead of Daniel Ricciardo in the overall standings with two races to go, there is suggestion that Red Bull could move to replace him with Max Verstappen, the Dutchman also having impressed immensely in his rookie year.
Though such a deal would be seen as a way to potentially prevent the likes of Ferrari and Mercedes swooping for the teenager further down the line – rather than make a statement against Kvyat's efforts -, Horner says there is no doubt that the former GP3 champion's place is under threat.
“Both drivers are under contract. Ricciardo's contract is fixed and obviously all the options are on our side with Daniil's but he's doing a great job and as long as we're here, he'll be in the car next year. There is nothing to announce as he is under contract. He's in the car next year 100 per cent, if there is a car here.”
Kvyat has notched up one podium and five top five results in 2015 so far, though with Red Bull currently without an engine deal for 2016, its place on the grid is yet to be confirmed.