Max Verstappen casts doubt over his Red Bull future if Helmut Marko forced out

Max Verstappen has cast further doubt over his Red Bull future after suggesting that he will quit Formula One’s dominant team if motorsport adviser Helmut Marko is forced out.

The PA news agency understands 80-year-old Austrian Marko, an instrumental figure in Verstappen’s career, faces a Red Bull investigation following the probe into claims of “inappropriate behaviour” against Christian Horner.

Horner’s female accuser was suspended earlier this week as a direct result of Red Bull’s inquiry which exonerated the 50-year-old team principal.

My loyalty to him is very big, and I have always expressed this to everyone within the team, everyone high up, that he is an important part in my decision-making for the future

Max Verstappen on Helmut Marko

Marko is employed by the F1 team’s parent company, Red Bull GmbH. Asked if he could be suspended following Saturday’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, he told Austrian broadcaster ORF: “Ultimately, I’ll decide for myself what I do. The theoretical possibility always exists.”

PA has approached Red Bull Racing for comment.

Red Bull’s three-time reigning world champion Verstappen, speaking after qualifying on pole for Saturday’s race in Jeddah, said: “I have a lot of respect for Helmut, and what we have achieved together.

“It goes very far. My loyalty to him is very big, and I have always expressed this to everyone within the team, everyone high up, that he is an important part in my decision-making for the future.

Red Bull Racing consultant Helmut Marko (left) with team principle Christian Horner (David Davies/PA)
2

Red Bull Racing consultant Helmut Marko (left) with team principle Christian Horner (David Davies/PA)

“It is very important that he stays. I feel like if such an important pillar falls away, and I have told the team this, that it is not good for my situation as well.

“Helmut built this team together with (Red Bull’s late owner and founder) Dietrich (Mateschitz) from day one, and he’s always been very loyal to the team.

“It is very important that you give the man a lot of respect for what he has done, and that comes back to loyalty and integrity, so it is important that he stays.”

Verstappen did not mention Horner’s name as he defended Marko.

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen is under contract until 2028 (Darko Bandic/AP)
2

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen is under contract until 2028 (Darko Bandic/AP)

Horner, team principal at Red Bull since 2005, said on Thursday he is certain Verstappen will see out his long-term contract with Red Bull, despite the ongoing controversy.

Verstappen’s father, Jos, claimed Red Bull will “explode” if Horner remained in his role.

Verstappen, whose deal runs until 2028, has been linked with a move to Mercedes to replace Lewis Hamilton next season. Hamilton said earlier this week that the 26-year-old Dutchman is on Mercedes’ “list”.

Related Posts

Royal title Meghan Markle and Prince Harry ‘refused to use’ for Archie after it ‘bothered them’

FROM the moment he was born, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have done everything to protect their young son, Archie.But few know the lengths Prince Harry…

Meghan & Harry declined invite to Archie’s godfather’s wedding ‘to avoid overshadowing bride & making event too awkward’

PRINCE Harry and Meghan Markle reportedly declined an invite to Archie’s godfather’s wedding to “avoid overshadowing the day”.Hugh Grosvenor, the Duke of Westminster, will marry Olivia Henson, 31,…

Meghan Markle to receive ‘pricey gift’ from Prince Harry for wedding anniversary – after her homemade ‘paper’ present

MEGHAN Markle could receive a very special gift from Prince Harry for their six-year wedding anniversary today.Speaking to Fabulous, Editor-in-chief of Majesty Magazine Ingrid Seward said the Duke of…

Saudi chief makes ‘script’ request to Mike Tyson ahead of Jake Paul fight amid ‘fix’ allegations

Turki Alalshikh has issued a message to Mike Tyson ahead of his fight against Mike Tyson. Turki Alalshikh has made a request to Mike Tyson ahead of…

John Fury called out by boxing fans for ’embarrassing’ thing he did to Mike Tyson after headbutt incident

Boxing fans have hit out at John Fury’s moment with Mike Tyson. John Fury has been ruthlessly slammed by boxing fans for his ’embarrassing’ exchange with Mike…

The time Mike Tyson hit an opponent so hard that he quit between rounds and walked off

Tyson was involved in one of his most surreal fights back in 2000.Mike Tyson had one of the most bizarre fights of his career against Polish heavyweight…