Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe

Marko says he "should have known" better after losing Verstappen F1 bet

Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko says he has learned never to bet against Max Verstappen again, after losing a 500 euro wager at Formula 1’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. 

Helmut Marko, Consultant, Red Bull Racing, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing

Helmut Marko, Consultant, Red Bull Racing, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing

Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Marko and Red Bull team boss Christian Horner agreed a bet ahead of qualifying for the F1 season finale over where Verstappen would qualify, following the struggles he had faced through the weekend. 

But Marko’s belief that Verstappen would only line up on the second row of the grid proved wide of the mark, as the world champion pulled off a surprise pole position that Verstappen admitted felt "weird". 

Although that meant Marko has had to hand over 500 euros to Horner, he says he is not too unhappy that his driver and engineers managed to prove him wrong. 

Speaking to Autosport about the bet, Marko said: “I never believed that we could come back for qualifying the way that we did.

“We lost in FP3 half a second just in sector three, so it was some sort of motivation also.  

“Christian said front row and I said no, second row. I lost it, but I'm very happy that our engineers did a fantastic job to make the right adjustments, and also that Max in the end delivered.

“I should have known Max!” 

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19

Verstappen himself laughed at the fact that Marko had lost money on him, as he suggested that the Austrian should never doubt his potential. 

“First of all, I think Helmut learned his lesson: never bet against me,” he said.

“Of course it's always a bit of a gamble because you don't know. We already tried a lot of things on the car which didn't really seem to solve the problem.  

“But I think GP [Gianpiero Lambiase] stayed calm and he definitely went through a lot of options. And then with my feedback, he came up with a very good set-up for qualifying.” 

Pushed on Verstappen's claim about learning not to bet against him again, Marko said: "Unfortunately he's right."  

Marko also reckoned the cooler temperatures at the end of qualifying helped Red Bull get into the right operating window. 

Asked about how difficult to solve the balance issues, he said: “To lose half a second in one sector, with no grip, understeer, oversteer.  

“Obviously the temperatures helped, but the main thing was that he did right the adjustments without losing top speed because not everybody was convinced that we will be in the front. And overtaking is very important, so you need the top speed.” 

Be part of Autosport community

Join the conversation
Previous article F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Start time, starting grid, how to watch, & more
Next article Norris: F1 pit exit overtaking ban a "terrible rule", drivers ask for rethink

Top Comments

There are no comments at the moment. Would you like to write one?

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe