By Luis Torres, Staff Writer
Red Bull Racing are no strangers of making midseason changes to promote a Scuderia Toro Rosso driver.
Despite rumors of both teams retaining their drivers for the duration of 2019, that all went out the window Monday with a bombshell announcement.
RBR confirmed during the summer break that Alexander Albon has been promoted to the team. This meant Pierre Gasly’s tenure with the team ends after 12 rounds as he’ll head back to STR for the final nine rounds.
“Red Bull are in the unique position of having four talented Formula One drivers under contract who can be rotated between the Team and Toro Rosso, RBR stated in Monday’s press release. “The Team will use the next nine races to evaluate Alex’s performance in order to make an informed decision as to who will drive alongside Max (Verstappen) in 2020.
“Everyone at the Team looks forward to welcoming Alex and supporting him during the next phase of his F1 career.”
This marks the first midseason change in Formula One since 2017 as all 20 drivers stayed with their teams in all 21 rounds last year.
Gasly currently sits sixth in the Driver’s World Championship with 63 points, with a fourth in the British Grand Prix being his best result.
Albon’s sixth at the German Grand Prix, where Gasly mightly struggled in the end, was his best run in his tenure at Toro Rosso. He’ll head into the Belgian Grand Prix weekend (August 30-September 1) 15th in the standings with 16 points to his name.