Renault's Formula One principal Eric Boullier says the team dropped Nick Heidfeld because the German driver was not performing on the track rather than for any financial reason.
The team announced on Thursday that the experienced Heidfeld, who has scored more points than Russian team mate Vitaly Petrov in 11 races, was being replaced by Brazilian reserve Bruno Senna.
Senna, nephew of the late triple champion Ayrton, raced for struggling Hispania (HRT) last year without scoring a point.
Boullier claimed every weekend the media jump on him saying 'why is Vitaly faster than Nick?'
He says he simply wasn't happy with the pure speed of Heidfeld and his global performance as an experienced driver, adding he had to change something in the team to shake and wake everybody up.