Red Bull’s team boss, Christian Horner, has spoken out against offensive comments made by Helmut Marko regarding Sergio Perez, emphasizing that such remarks “weren’t right.” This marks the first time a representative from Red Bull has addressed the controversy surrounding its motorsport adviser’s comments, which implied that Perez’s inconsistent performance was linked to his ethnicity.
Horner acknowledged that Marko had expressed regret and issued an apology, remarking, “Even at 80 years of age, it is not too late to learn.” Marko’s public apology was delivered via Red Bull’s Servus television channel, where he sought to make amends for his earlier statements.
The controversy erupted when Marko commented on Perez’s variable form during the season, suggesting, “We know that he has problems in qualifying, he has fluctuations in form, he is South American and he is just not as completely focused in his head as Max [Verstappen] is or as Sebastian [Vettel].” Notably, this wasn’t the first time Marko had referred to Perez as South American, despite the fact that Perez hails from Mexico, which is geographically located in North America.
Horner, speaking to Sky Sports after the first practice at the Singapore Grand Prix, explained why Red Bull as a team had not immediately commented on Marko’s remarks: “Helmut is not an employee of Red Bull Racing,” he clarified, “That’s why we didn’t put out a statement. He is part of the wider Red Bull Group, and they put that apology out through their Servus TV channel.”
It has come to light that Marko’s apology was prompted by Oliver Mintzlaff, Red Bull’s chief executive officer of corporate projects and new investments. Mintzlaff, responsible for Red Bull’s motorsport activities since the passing of co-owner Dietrich Mateschitz, holds the authority over Marko in his capacity as a consultant.
Horner sought to reassure the public that Perez still enjoys Red Bull’s full support, stating, “Checo is a massively popular member of our team. He’s an important member of our team. I pushed hard to sign him. We have a huge following around the world and we take that very seriously and responsibly.”
In light of this controversy within the Red Bull Racing team, it’s essential to ensure that discussions in the world of motorsport remain respectful and sensitive to the diverse backgrounds and nationalities of the drivers involved.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Keyword: Red Bull Racing Controversy
What were Helmut Marko’s offensive comments about Sergio Perez?
Helmut Marko made offensive comments about Sergio Perez, implying that Perez’s inconsistent performance was due to his ethnicity. He suggested that Perez, as a South American, was not as focused as other drivers like Max Verstappen or Sebastian Vettel.
How did Red Bull team principal Christian Horner respond to these comments?
Christian Horner, the team principal of Red Bull Racing, spoke out against Marko’s comments, stating that they “weren’t right.” He also mentioned that Marko had expressed regret and issued an apology for his remarks.
Why did Red Bull Racing not immediately comment on Marko’s remarks?
Horner explained that Helmut Marko is not an employee of Red Bull Racing but rather part of the wider Red Bull Group. Therefore, the team did not release an official statement, and Marko issued his apology through Red Bull’s Servus television channel.
Who prompted Helmut Marko to issue an apology for his comments?
Oliver Mintzlaff, Red Bull’s chief executive officer of corporate projects and new investments, played a role in prompting Marko to issue his public apology. Mintzlaff oversees Red Bull’s motorsport activities and holds authority over Marko as a consultant.
Is Sergio Perez still supported by Red Bull Racing despite the controversy?
Yes, Christian Horner emphasized that Sergio Perez continues to have the full support of Red Bull Racing. Perez is considered a valuable and popular member of the team, and his signing was pushed for by Horner. The team takes its global following seriously and responsibly.