Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko insists that Daniel Ricciardo was the best long-term option for the defending champions after being named as Sebastian Vettel's team-mate for the 2014 season.
Ricciardo earned the opportunity to move up to the senior team from Toro Rosso
despite speculation that Kimi Raikkonen
could be an option for the Milton Keynes-based team.
Raikkonen is now set to make a return to Ferrari
for next year but Marko said that Red Bull
had made the right call in promoting from within when replacing Mark Webber.
"We decided what was best for us in the long term, not just what was best immediately," he told O Estado de S.Paulo
. "How old is Kimi? Daniel is 24. And the contract is for three years. So Daniel was the one who offered the best prospects for our team.
"Managing two drivers like Sebastian and Kimi would not have been easy. Each of them would have the obligation to be the best."
Marko added that the team had made it clear to Ricciardo what it expected of him when he makes the move up from Toro Rosso
"We hope that after three or four races he is able to start challenging Sebastian,” he said. "I'm not saying that he has to beat Vettel; what I hope is that he brings the points we need to win the constructors' title.
"We need Daniel to be as fast as Mark. Sometimes Mark was on the same level as Sebastian, and sometimes even better. That's what we want from Ricciardo."