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Jean-Eric Vergne admitted he was disappointed Red Bull overlooked him for the second driver’s seat at the reigning constructors champions ahead of the 2014 campaign.
The Milton Keynes-based team revealed that Daniel Ricciardo would be replacing Mark Webber, who decided to retire from the sport at the end of last season.
Having driven alongside Ricciardo for Torro Rosso, Vergne was hoping he would beat the Australian to the position and be given the opportunity to race alongside four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel.
However the 23-year-old missed out on the seat and has admitted it has taken some time to get over the setback and look forward.
He told Sky Sports F1: “It was a disappointment of course not to go to Red Bull. As a racing driver you want to win races and be World Champion, and for this you need the best car – and Red Bull is the best car.
“So it was a big disappointment I had to go through. Then I had to look in the mirror and say, ‘Why did Red Bull pick him up and not me?’
I think that helped me a lot in trying to be better.”
Vergne will be looking to prove a point next season with Torro Rosso as he prepares to drive alongside the 19-year-old newcomer to the team, Daniil Kvyat.
With the spotlight firmly on Ricciardo’s shoulders and how he will get on alongside Vettel at Red Bull, Vergne has the opportunity to go about his business under the radar and try and pick up points for Torro Rosso next season.