The Red Bull Young Driver Program is not only one of the most successful driver development programs in motor racing, delivering greats such as Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen, but is also one of the most ruthless, with a long list of talented drivers being dropped since it was founded in 2001 after failing to live up to expectations.
Red Bull drop Niko Kari from driver program
The latest driver to be dropped from the program is Niko Kari, who currently competes in the GP3 Series. At the end of last year, the 17 year old Finn was warned by Red Bull that his season in European Formula 3 was not acceptable. Despite this however, he was handed a seat at Arden for 2017 to drive in GP3 – the support series for Formula 1 and Formula 2.
This year, Kari has again disappointed his Red Bull bosses, and only lies in tenth place in the Drivers’ Championship after ten races, his best finish coming in Austria where he finished in third place.
“We will work with him until the end of the season. His performance has not been what we were expecting,” Dr Helmut Marko told Finland’s C More broadcaster at Spa, with the Finn’s dreams of one day racing for Red Bull now being in tatters.