Helmut Marko breaks silence on new Red Bull CEO rift rumours

Red Bull Leipzig lost 7-0 to Manchester City in the Champions League recently.

Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko has quashed any suggestion that himself and new Red Bull CEO Oliver Mintzlaff have been arguing following a football-related comment made by the 79-year-old, with Marko labelling the rumours as “nonsense”.

Marko joked about Red Bull Leipzig losing 7-0 to Manchester City in the second leg of their Champions League last 16 match, which saw the Germans crash out of the competition.

Mintzlaff, of course, is the former CEO of the team, a role he held before being promoted following the tragic death of Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz.

“All nonsense,” Marko told Krone newspaper in regard to the speculation of a rift. “A totally bloated story.

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“There was nothing more than an ironic comment as a non-football expert. Now there are new structures that also include the independence that we want.

“It is a collaboration that is developing well.”

Mintzlaff has certainly been busy since taking on his new role as CEO of the F1 team, with sister team AlphaTauri having been linked several times to a potential sale.

It was reported ahead of the 2023 F1 season that Mintzlaff was considering selling the Faenza-based team, something Marko and team principal Franz Tost denied.

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“I used to call Didi when I heard these (sale) rumours, who never knew anything about it,” Tost told Sport1.

“Now I’ve taken care of it with the new manager. Alpha Tauri is not for sale.

“I had good conversations with Oliver Mintzlaff. Alpha Tauri will continue to be the team that trains young drivers. But we both think our performance needs to improve.”

Whilst both Tost and Marko have denied that a sale is on the cards, Marko has revealed that the energy drink company are looking into how they can reduce the team’s running costs, with AlphaTauri costing more than Red Bull.

Two key reasons for this are due to where they are based and also because of their poor performances.

After finishing ninth in the Constructors’ Championship last season, AlphaTauri are one of two teams yet to score a point this season, to add to their woes.

One idea that Red Bull are looking into is whether it’d be possible to move AlphaTauri from Faenza in Italy to England, where the factory team is based.

“I said at the beginning of the year that after ninth place we had to think about something,” Marko said. “This became a theoretical sale, a theoretical move to England, a theoretical leave-it-as-is.

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“This was also discussed with Mintzlaff. But nothing has been decided except that there will be no sale.”

There is certainly a lot going on clearly between Mintzlaff, Marko, and AlphaTauri behind-the-scenes, with Marko admitting that as it stands the new CEO “doesn’t have the expertise” to make decisions in the same manner as Mateschitz.

“Mateschitz was the owner and CEO, so Mintzlaff can’t make decisions like Didi did,” Marko insisted. “And we all know that he doesn’t have the expertise.”