Red Bull drop Niko Kari from driver program

Niko Kari has become the latest casualty of the Red Bull Young Driver Programme, being dropped from the scheme after a disappointing season.


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.



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Studying Media and Communications at Oxford Brookes University, Chris began writing for Last Word On Sports in March 2016. In the May of the same year, he was appointed as Associate Editor for the Motorsport department. Chris has since been appointed as the Department Head for Motorsport, being appointed in July 2016. Chris has a passion for Formula 1 and is a keen follower of Formula 2. It is his dream to become a Journalist or a Press Officer in the sport that he loves after graduating from university.


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