Red Bull Racing has confirmed that Daniel Ricciardo will race for the team in 2014.
The news was announced on Red Bull owned Servus TV on Monday evening.
The Australian made his debut for HRT in 2011 and joined Toro Rosso at the start of 2012.
He has scored 22 points, with a best finish of seventh in this year’s Chinese Grand Prix.
Ricciardo, 24, replaces compatriot Mark Webber and will drive alongside reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel next season.
It will be the first time that Red Bull has fielded a line-up consisting of two drivers who have come through their junior programme.
Red Bull confirmed that Ricciardo joins Vettel as part of a “multi-year agreement.”
“It’s fantastic to confirm Daniel as the team’s race driver for 2014,” said team principal Christian Horner.
“He’s a very talented youngster, he’s committed, he’s got a great attitude and in the end it was a very logical choice for us to choose Daniel. He joined the Red Bull Junior Team in 2008 and we’ve seen in his junior career in Formula 3 and Renault World Series that he’s capable of winning races and championships.”
“He’s stood out in each of these categories and we’ve followed his progress with great interest. He’s got all the attributes that are required to drive for our team: he’s got a great natural ability, he’s a good personality and a great guy to work with.”
“Daniel knows what the team expects from him; he’ll learn quickly and it’s very much a medium to long term view that we’re taking in developing him. The seat within the team is a wonderful opportunity and I think he’s going to be a big star of the future.”
“I feel very, very good at the moment and obviously there’s a lot of excitement running through me,” said Ricciardo.
“Since joining F1 in 2011, I hoped this would happen and over time the belief in me has grown; I had some good results and Red Bull has decided that this is it, so it’s a good time. Next year I’ll be with a Championship-winning team, arguably the best team, and will be expected to deliver. I’m ready for that. I’m not here to run around in tenth place, I want to get the best results for myself and the team.”
“I would like to thank the team for giving me the opportunity to show what I can do. I know the team quite well already since being its reserve driver in 2010, which should make the transition easier.”
“It will be a great challenge to be up against Vettel, I’m looking forward to that. My aim is to finish this season as strong as possible, for myself and Scuderia Toro Rosso. Then, once the off-season is here, I’ll be fully focussed on next year and the next stage of my career.”
Technical director Adrian Newey added that Ricciardo is the most promising of Red Bull’s young drivers.
“Since Mark announced his retirement, Christian and I have been looking carefully at the driver market, along with [consultant] Helmut Marko and [Red Bull owner] Dietrich Mateschitz. We could have taken an experienced driver, somebody guaranteed to deliver to a relatively known level, or equally we could take on a much younger driver in the hope that they’ll develop to a very high level.”
“We looked at the latter option and concluded that of the younger drivers, Daniel is the most promising.”
“From Red Bull’s point of view that also fits well because the driver that Christian and I feel is the most promising is part of the Red Bull young driver programme. The decision actually reminded me a little bit of a similar situation we had when I was at Williams.”
“Nigel Mansell was leaving and we needed someone alongside Alain Prost. We could stick with Riccardo Patrese or take a punt on a young driver called Damon Hill who was our test driver at the time. I think it’s good to bring young blood in and give promising drivers a chance.”
Red Bull has yet to confirm who will replace Ricciardo at Toro Rosso next season.