Max Verstappen, ‘outstanding young talent’ promoted to Red Bull; Kvyat to Toro Rosso

Red Bull announced on Thursday they had promoted Max Verstappen and demoted Daniil Kvyat to Toro Rosso in a surprising shake-up following the latter's Russian Grand Prix mishap.

Newly promoted Red Bull driver Max Verstappen shown with Toro Rosso at the season opening Australian Grand Prix in March. Peter Fox / Getty Images
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Max Verstappen has been promoted into a Red Bull Racing seat for the Spanish Grand Prix as the marque seemingly deemed Daniil Kvyat's transgressions unforgivable on Thursday.

Formula One team Red Bull announced the move in a statement that read in part, "Max has proven to be an outstanding young talent. His performance at Toro Rosso has been impressive so far and we are pleased to give him the opportunity to drive for Red Bull Racing."

Kvyat was harshly criticised for causing a crash in his home Russian Grand Prix last Sunday. Red Bull called it a "day of disaster". The 22-year-old aggressively came up behind Sebastian Vettel around the second turn, nudging the Ferrari from behind and causing Vettel to veer into his own Red Bull teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, and ensuingly ending the race of Force India's Nico Hulkenberg. The two Red Bulls and Ferrari recovered before Kvyat then rammed Vettel again from behind going into the third turn, causing the German to spin out and hit the wall.

Watch Daniil Kvyat cause a crash in the opening moments of the Russian Grand Prix on the F1 website

He had angered Vettel with his aggressive driving in the previous race, the Chinese Grand Prix, where he manoeuvred to a third-place finish for his first podium.

The 22-year-old Kvyat finished seventh in the drivers’ standings last season, his first with Red Bull’s first team after he had spent two seasons racing for Toro Rosso himself. He is eighth in the current standings.

Verstappen, the 18-year-old son of former F1 driver Jos Verstappen, has widely been tipped as a future star. He finished 12th for Red Bull’s junior team last season and finished fourth at the Hungarian and US Grands Prix. He has placed in the points in every race to begin 2016.

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“Dany will be able to continue his development at Toro Rosso, in a team that he is familiar with, giving him the chance to regain his form and show his potential,” Red Bull’s statement on Thursday also read. It is expected the arrangement is to be permanent for the rest of the season,

“We are in the unique position to have all four drivers across Red Bull Racing and Toro Rosso under long term contracts with Red Bull, so we have the flexibility to move them between the two teams.”

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