Red Bull have dumped Daniil Kvyat for the rest of the Formula One season and replaced him with teenage sensation Max Verstappen, the team announced on Thursday.
The dramatic demotion comes four days after the Russian driver crashed into Sebastien Vettel's Ferrari twice in front of his home fans at Sochi.
As punishment, Kvyat will now drop down to Verstappen's seat in Red Bull’s junior team Toro Rosso.
Verstappen joins Australia's Daniel Ricciardo in the Red Bull garage for the remaining 17 races of the season, while Kvyat returns to Toro Rosso after being promoted to replace Vettel, who won four world championships with Red Bull, in 2015.
Kvyat was in the Red Bull dog house after his antics in Sunday's Russian Grand Prix triggered carnage on the first lap.
For the second race in succession Vettel was left furious by Kvyat's reckless aggression.
Kvyat ran in to the back of the German at Turn Two and then as the pair recovered they clashed again at Turn Three, the violence of the crash sending Vettel spinning into the barriers and out of the race.
Bleep ... and the .... bleep
The Ferrari ace was so angry that his broadcast comments, via Ferrari team radio, were punctuated by a succession of 'bleeps' as he swore about the incident.
The clash came just two weeks after Vettel had accused Kvyat of diving "like a torpedo" into his car at the Chinese Grand Prix.
Kvyat cut a contrite figure in the aftermath of Sochi, admitting: "All the mess came from me. It doesn't feel great, but sometimes this happens in F1. Usually I learn from it.
"I apologise to everyone who was involved. I think we all need to talk. It's easy to attack me and I guess everyone will and I’m OK with that...”
Red Bull's motorsport advisor Austrian Helmut Marko, the hard-headed consultant who oversees the team for Red Bull owner Dieter Mateschitz, made clear his displeasure. "Let's put it this way," he said.
"Kvyat was over-motivated. Braking too late once and hitting another car would be acceptable in front of his home crowd, but this doesn't apply for the second crash.
"It's a pity because he not only ruined Vettel's race - and Ricciardo’s race - but also his own race. He had to do an extra stop. It was a day of disaster for Red Bull."