Mark Webber insists he was not surprised by Red Bull's shock announcement last week to promote Max Verstappen to its senior team and relegate Daniil Kvyat to Toro Rosso.
The Australian, who won nine races with Red Bull Racing during his seven year spell with the team - finishing third in the Drivers' Championship in 2010, 2011 and in his final season in 2013 - adds that he feels the move has been “brewing” for a while, although it was a bit “harsh” on Kvyat.
“Yeah it is harsh. [But] it's a big business. Things move fast. There's a bit of [Red Bull] getting ahead of the 2017 market a bit [too], getting everything ready,” Webber told The Telegraph
“It will be a complete non-topic in three months as usual in Formula One. In F1 you have nowhere to hide. It's up to you every session. You're measured on your own performance.”
“I'm not surprised,” added the 39-year-old, who now competes in the WEC with Porsche. “It's probably [been] on the cards even before Russia [and Kvyat's opening lap antics there].
“You could feel there was something brewing. He's had a year there and they don't believe that he's done enough.
“Normally they wait until the end of the year but that doesn't happen sometimes, particularly with Red Bull. Bang.
“Let's see if Max can break Red Bull records again.
“Is Max ready? He's got no choice.
“He has to be.”