Helmut Marko considers the penalties imposed on Max Verstappen in Jeddah to be unfair. According to the Red Bull motorsport advisor, the race management openly favors Lewis Hamilton.
“If Max runs into Hamilton it’s a penalty, if Hamilton pushes him off the track then apparently all of a sudden it’s a trivial offense. It can’t go on like this.” said Marko, who recalls that Hamilton left plenty of room before the second start gridlocked.
“The rules say you can’t be more than ten car lengths behind. But Hamilton did and prepared his tires better for the restart. We want to prove that now with data. Then we’ll see.”
On the radio, this subject was discussed between Michael Masi, FIA Race Director, and Jonathan Wheatley, Red Bull Sporting Director. Masi explained that the 10 car lengths procedure did not apply here since it was a race restart and not a classic procedure.
“No reason for Verstappen to calm down”
But Marko does not take offense: “It looks like the rules are used a little differently here. But we’re looking at it all now and then we’ll go to the commissioners with the right arguments.”
For the incomprehension and the heavy braking which led to a contact between Verstappen and Hamilton, Marko assures that his pilot did not make a “brake test”, that is to say that he did not pound in front of his rival. He even blames the Mercedes driver.
“Lewis didn’t realize Max wanted to let him through. Our engineers are preparing the data to prove that Max was consistent in his braking, he didn’t do a brake test like Hamilton said.”
“Then Hamilton hit our car, unfortunately he put two cuts in the rear tire. It was so bad we couldn’t attack any more. We had to slow down afterwards.”
In any case, Marko wants his pilot to arrive in Abu Dhabi with the same state of mind: “I don’t think there’s any reason for him to calm down. It’s the game between Mercedes and Red Bull, and the game between Max and Lewis. And remember what happened at Silverstone. and what happened in Budapest. Remember that. “