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Marko: AlphaTauri F1 must improve performance and finances

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko says its satellite Formula 1 team AlphaTauri will stay in-house but must be more cost efficient for the Red Bull group.

Nyck de Vries, AlphaTauri AT04

Amid reports in the German media that the Faenza squad could be sold following Red Bull's change of management, team boss Franz Tost and his Red Bull counterpart Christian Horner quashed suggestions the team is up for sale.

But while advisor Helmut Marko confirmed "AlphaTauri would remain in-house", he acknowledged that Red Bull is looking at ways to improve its performance both on and off the track.

While the Red Bull F1 team has been raking in significant prize money following its successes over the past few seasons, capped by last year's constructors' world title, AlphaTauri has been sliding backwards.

Its ninth-place finish in last year's championship means it is has become more expensive for Red Bull to maintain and therefore harder to justify as a vehicle to promote the small-scale clothing brand AlphaTauri.

While the late Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz was fully committed to funding AlphaTauri, incoming Red Bull CEO Oliver Mintzlaff is understood to be more critical of the team's performance on and especially off the track.

Team advisor Marko explained that "we have to do something" to change the team's sporting and financial performance.

"It's true that AlphaTauri's ninth place in the constructors' championship is not what we expect," Marko said in an interview on the YouTube channel of Autosport sister publication Formel1.de.

"That means there has to be an improvement. It is also true that the financial commitment at AlphaTauri is too high, this means that we also have to do something on the sponsor side, on the revenue side.

Helmut Marko, Consultant, Red Bull Racing

Helmut Marko, Consultant, Red Bull Racing

Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images

"In the course of this process we also discussed the possibilities, but it was always very clear that AlphaTauri would remain in-house. That is an important part of our junior work.

"As mentioned, neither sporting performance nor financial performance meet Red Bull's standards, so we have to do something to change that."

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One of the options mooted in the German press was a move from Faenza to England, as AlphaTauri's aero department and wind tunnel already operates out of its Bicester base, but Marko says a full transfer of the Italian part of the team "is an overinterpretation" at this stage.

"It's obvious that we're playing through various options, including England," he explained. "AlphaTauri already has over 100 employees in England. It's a split between Italy and England because it's much easier to find employees in England.

"But the idea that the entire team will immediately move over there is also an overinterpretation."

When asked what a satisfactory result for the team and its drivers Yuki Tsunoda and Nyck de Vries would be in the 2023 F1 season, Marko replied "anything between sixth and seventh is acceptable [in the constructors' standings]".

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