Helmut Marko sparks feud with ex-F1 driver

Helmut Marko is an outspoken and controversial figure in the Formula 1 paddock.

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has expressed scepticism about the emergence of any young Austrian driver achieving success in Formula 1 in the near future. 

Marko’s comments came in response to Alexander Wurz, who mentioned his son Charlie’s promising performances in junior racing categories.

However, Marko remained unconvinced by the notion of Charlie Wurz’s potential in the sport.

While Austria enjoys a strong presence in Formula 1 through teams like Red Bull Racing and the involvement of Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, it has been a decade since an Austrian driver competed on the grid. 

Want to work in Formula 1? Browse the latest F1 job vacancies

Christian Klien was the last Austrian driver to make an appearance in Formula 1 in 2010. 

The country’s connection to the sport is further emphasized by the Red Bull Ring’s recent contract extension to host the Austrian Grand Prix until 2030.

In response to Marko’s statement, Alexander Wurz, who had his own Formula 1 career from 1997 to 2007, spoke about his son Charlie’s potential in motorsport. 

The 17-year-old has already achieved success in the Formula 4 UAE Championship and the Formula Regional Oceania Championship.

Article continues below

Expressing his belief in Charlie’s abilities, Wurz said, “I think he has what it takes to be a professional racing driver. 

“He has already shown the speed.” 

However, Marko firmly disagreed with this assessment, suggesting that Charlie’s current results do not align with a path to Formula 1.

Marko responded, stating, “The results he is currently achieving are not in the direction of Formula 1.” 

READ: Max Verstappen calls for racetrack to be renamed

At present, Charlie Wurz will need to demonstrate significant progress in the junior categories to make a successful ascent in motorsport. 

While he has secured titles in the Formula 4 UAE and Formula Regional Oceania Championships, his performance in the Formula Regional European Championship has been challenging. 

Competing for ART Grand Prix, Wurz has scored only one point from six races, finishing in the top 20 on only two occasions.