Helmut Marko, advisor to the Red Bull Racing team, has acknowledged the talent of Mexican driver Sergio 'Checo' Perez, having previously been critical of his performance. In an interview with Austria's OE24 network, Marko highlighted the fact that while others have criticized 'Checo', the team never has. He stressed the importance of Max Verstappen as a decisive factor in the team's dominance but also recognized 'Checo' as a first-class driver.
Marko's Praise for Honda and Verstappen
Marko also underscored the role of Honda in Red Bull's ongoing success following yet another championship-winning season. He lauded Honda for creating a fiercely competitive and reliable engine, emphasizing the essence of teamwork and passion in the team's success. The performance improvements of Max Verstappen, particularly in tyre management, were also acknowledged by Marko.
Red Bull's Struggles and Turnaround
Pierre Wache, a key figure in the Red Bull team, revealed that the team 'failed' in one aspect of the 2023 season despite Max Verstappen's success. He discussed Sergio Perez's struggles with the RB19 and his form after the summer break. However, a significant turnaround was observed after a major deep dive by Red Bull, which improved Perez's performance.
Speculations and Future Prospects
Christian Horner, team principal of Red Bull, discussed the potential of Lando Norris as a replacement for Sergio Perez and the dynamics of having two 'number one drivers' in the team. Lewis Hamilton's potential switch to Red Bull for 2024 was also a subject of Horner's comments. As the Formula 1 season concluded with Verstappen and 'Checo' Perez obtaining the top two spots, Marko praised 'Checo' Perez as one of the favourites for the upcoming Formula 1 season.