Published On: Fri, Mar 8th, 2024

Helmut Marko ‘banned from giving interviews’ as Red Bull open new investigation | F1 | Sport

‘s head office have reportedly asked not to speak to the media in Saudi Arabia. The 80-year-old, who is a key ally of , suggested he could face suspension after this weekend’s Grand Prix, with the drinks company believed to be looking into the source of media leaks during their investigation into .

Marko has played a significant role in Verstappen’s motorsport career, standing by his side in all three of his world title wins since 2021. He has acted as an advisor to Red Bull’s F1 operation since 2005, the same year Horner was appointed team principal.

A recent investigation into Horner over allegations of inappropriate behaviour, raised by a female colleague who has now been suspended, sparked tension behind the scenes at Red Bull. Horner strenuously denied wrongdoing and was subsequently cleared by the drinks company.

WhatsApp messages and photos, allegedly from Horner to an unnamed person, were then leaked to the media. Verstappen’s father, Jos, called for Horner to step down for fear of the Red Bull team being ‘torn apart’.

Verstappen Sr reportedly had a birthday dinner in Dubai earlier this week, which Marko attended but Horner did not. According to, Marko is now the subject of an investigation launched by Red Bull regarding the source of media leaks during the Horner saga.

The investigation is ongoing and Red Bull have not yet reached a conclusion regarding whether or not Marko breached team protocol. Red Bull have been approached by Express Sport for comment.

Dutch outlet De Telegraaf claim that the motorsport veteran has been asked by Red Bull’s Austrian headquarters not to conduct media duties while they carry out their investigation.

Max Verstappen’s lucrative Red Bull contract, which runs until the end of 2028, reportedly includes an exit clause allowing him to leave if Marko departs. On the triple world champion’s future, Marko continued: “Max is definitely the strongest asset, there are no faster drivers at the moment.

“Losing him, that would be a huge loss. Also for the mechanics and engineers, who all strive to work for Max.” Verstappen went on to clinch pole position in Saudi Arabian Grand Prix qualifying on Friday, with team-mate Sergio Perez taking P3.

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