Kvyat hopes Red Bull can give him a home win

SOCHI (Russia) • Daniil Kvyat hopes he can find the speed to thrill local fans and threaten an end to Nico Rosberg's winning start to the Formula One season in this weekend's third Russian Grand Prix at the Sochi Autodrom.

The Russian Red Bull driver believes his team have found the form to mount a challenge to both Mercedes and Ferrari after a disappointing 2015 season and he wants to prove that potential at the Black Sea resort circuit.

"I don't want to predict it, but it looks like our chassis is quite strong and good," he said. "And who knows? I mean everything is possible.

"Last year, even with a bit of trouble, we looked very competitive in Monaco, but this year probably we have a chance to be even more competitive. We don't know where it's going to bring us, but there are some good opportunities coming."

Kvyat finished third in the Chinese Grand Prix on April 17 behind victorious Rosberg of Mercedes and Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari.

His podium finish has set the standard for his team.

After three straight season-opening wins and six in succession overall, Rosberg has a clear 36-point lead in the drivers' title race ahead of Mercedes team-mate and defending three-time champion Lewis Hamilton.

After three successive races where opening-lap collisions have damaged his prospects of winning, the Englishman has still been fast enough to carry a serious threat and maintains he has the belief, skill and motivation to secure even more success.

"We all are greedy, we always want more," he said. "You know that you have just won the championship, you still feel healthy, you still feel fit... So you don't want to stop and give it to the other guy."

Hamilton not only has to end his run of losses to Rosberg to kick-start his own title chase, but he also has to resist the challenge of a hungry Ferrari team who, in Sochi, will introduce a new front wing and an upgraded engine.

"I am running out of time," admitted Hamilton as he flew out of Shanghai. "I need to start putting a few results together."

At least he has winning form in Sochi to inspire him, having won both the two previous races in 2014 and last year for Mercedes with drives that suggested the smooth circuit suits him well.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

F1 RUSSIAN GP
Practice 1 & 2: Singtel TV Ch114 & StarHub Ch208, 3pm & 7pm

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 29, 2016, with the headline 'Kvyat hopes Red Bull can give him a home win'. Print Edition | Subscribe