Helmut Marko, Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Jeddah Corniche Circuit, 2024

Verstappen hoping peace reigns at Red Bull after Marko intrigue

Formula 1

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Max Verstappen said he hopes the Red Bull team remain united following a weekend of speculation over Helmut Marko’s future.

However Verstappen was satisfied the continued controversy surrounding Red Bull did not affect the team’s performance on the track last weekend. He led team mate Sergio Perez to their second consecutive one-two at the start of the season in the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

The team remains in the spotlight over its handling of an investigation into alleged inappropriate behaviour by team principal Christian Horner. The situation escalated over the weekend when Red Bull motorsport consultant Helmut Marko indicated he was about to be suspended by the company.

Verstappen reacted strongly to reports casting doubt on Marko’s future, indicating he might not see out his contract at the team if the 80-year-old left. However ahead of the race Marko indicated that following discussions with Red Bull CEO Oliver Mintzlaff his position was no longer under threat.

After taking victory on Saturday, Verstappen said he hoped the team would continue to remain united.

“I always said that what is most important is that we work together as a team and that everyone keeps the peace,” he said. “And that’s what we, I think, all agree on within the team.

“So hopefully from now on that is also fully the case.”

The reigning world champion was never seriously threatened as he extended a nine-race run of consecutive grand prix wins which began last year. He said the drama surrounding the team has not affected its performance on the track.

“Everyone is trying to focus in the same direction. I think the positive out of all this is that it didn’t hurt our performances.

“It’s a very strong team, also, mentally, what you can see from not only the driver’s side, but also mechanics, engineers, everyone is there to do their job. And I think everyone, even when there is stuff going on or whatever, they’re just very focused on their job as they should be.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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20 comments on “Verstappen hoping peace reigns at Red Bull after Marko intrigue”

  1. This would be the same Verstappen who weighed in a few days ago that he’d leave if things weren’t handled a certain way?

    F1 drivers are not nearly as skilled at politicking as they seem to think.

    1. Max supporting Marko has helped. Helmut stays at Red Bull.

    2. Luckily they are not. There are already enough circus elements in what is supposed to be a sport.

  2. Ah, it seems the rich men have finally manged to identify the real victims of their sleazy boss: their own peace of mind!

  3. I still remember a clear teamorder in brazil two years ago. Max denied this order, made it clear who’s boss.. Last weekend Max spoke again.. In favor of Marko, i guess thats it for mr Horner.. I wonder if we’ll see him at next gp, probably not..

  4. If latest rumour is true then things turned again, and now again its Horner who has to go.

    1. Which would mean its also game over for Perez latest by end of the season.

    2. The English and German press are taking curiously divergent positions on this; sounds like they’re being fed information from different sides of the rift.

      1. That sounds very plausibel. I had my info from private austria media (not ServusTV). We will see…

  5. “At Red Bull, we don’t only entertain you on the track!!”

  6. BLS (@brightlampshade)
    10th March 2024, 22:12

    It’s impressive that this is happening all whilst Red Bull & Max are at peak dominance.

    This is definitely one-upping Hamilton’s “My tyres are gone” in trying to lure others into a sign of weakness during domination.

  7. Ah, dear Helmut. So reminiscent of my old, lamented friend, darling Bette Davis. I worked with her, but not on The Anniversary, where she plated Mrs McTaggart, so memorably described by the critics as a “one-eyed, merciless monster of a mommie dearest terrorising her family”.
    Ah yes, family. One big, happy family.

  8. Would be nice of the press could next time handle these kind of situations as an internal bickering and just move on. They have wasted everyone time on something that seems just to be an internal soap which has absolutely zero value for the sport F1. It has shown a bad side of todays society and especially todays press and its antics, values and lack of integrity. All for the clicks and money. Liberty has taught them well.

    1. And if the press didn’t cover all of this you would find something wrong with that.

      1. That seems your stance..

  9. I don’t know who did what here, and who’s against whom, but if I was running Red Bull (the company), I’d chose Horner over Max every single day.

    Any driver can win in that car. Hell, even Perez came 2nd last season, and has two 2nd places in a row now.
    On the other hand, to replace the team boss who ran this outfit for 20 years, and managed to always keep it on an absolute edge (performance-vise), and to hope the team will remain as sharp as ever, is just an absolute fantasy. If Horner goes, the whole team might go down the drain. On the other hand, if Max goes, just put any of the free drivers in there, and you got the same thing. Alonso is free for next year, Sainz… Sainz is easily better than Perez, while Alonso is one of the best drivers to ever drive in F1.

    1. If Horner goes, the whole team might go down the drain.

      If it’s even a half decent set of engineers, they will take a good 12 months to notice that Horner hasn’t turned up at any races.
      The media will be short of one well known face to talk to, but otherwise you could replace Horner with Hamilton’s dog.

    2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      11th March 2024, 18:15

      Agreed about Horner over Max unless his behaviour was not professional. Even so they should have settled and given this
      person 15 years pay.

      But I think it’s good for the sport to have Horner go to another team and Newey to another constructor. Red Bull are simply too stacked as is and the current regulations are pretty much handicapping everyone else.

      1. No surprise there.;)
        Being hypocrit is almost your standard when max is somehow “involved” .

  10. Even so they should have settled and given this person 15 years pay.

    There’s a rumour around that involves Horner parting with 700,000 euros and RB topping that up to 1,000,000, and you will note the lady seems to be quiet.

    But I think it’s good for the sport to have Horner go to another team and Newey to another constructor.

    I think Horner is too toxic for any other team to consider, and he probably needs to “spend more time with his family”

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