Published On: Sat, Mar 9th, 2024

Red Bull make decision on Helmut Marko’s future after Max Verstappen ultimatum | F1 | Sport

Helmut Marko has confirmed that his F1 future is secure after a meeting with Red Bull managing director Oliver Mintzlaff in the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix paddock. 

Marko’s future at Red Bull was thrown up in the air on Friday following a report from that revealed that the Austrian was subject to an internal investigation.

The focus of the investigation related to the leaked WhatsApp conversations involving team principal Christian Horner, although speaking to Sky Germany ahead of the Grand Prix on Saturday, Marko confirmed that his future had been decided and that the verdict was a positive one. 

Fewer than 24 hours prior, Marko was feeling less sure about his future. “I’ll put it this way, it’s difficult to judge or let’s put it this way, ultimately, I’ll decide for myself what I do,” he said. “The theoretical possibility always exists.”

He then added: “I think it’s such a complex issue. Again, we want peace in the team. This world championship will be difficult enough with 24 races and we have to concentrate on that.”

This decision will give Red Bull a major boost as they look to appease reigning world champion Max Verstappen. The Dutchman made very strong comments when asked about Marko’s future on Friday.

He stated: “It is very important we keep the key people together because I feel if such an important pillar falls away, that’s also what I’ve said to the team, that is not good for my situation as well. So yeah, for sure, for me, Helmut has to stay.

“He has built this team together with Dietrich [Mateschitz] from day one. And he’s always been very loyal to the team, to everyone within the team, to make sure that everyone would keep their positions already from back in the day.

“I think it’s also very important, of course, that you give the man a lot of respect for what he has done. And that comes back also to loyalty, you know, and integrity. So, yeah, for sure, it’s important that he stays part of the team, also for me.”

Red Bull’s attention will now turn to the race in Jeddah. Verstappen secured his second pole position of the season, while Sergio Perez will launch from third on the grid as he looks for back-to-back top-two finishes. 

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