Dr Helmut Marko, Red Bull Racing’s key advisor, has cast a shadow of doubt over Sergio Perez’s presence in a Red Bull car for the 2024 season.
As rumours swirl, Daniel Ricciardo’s recent visit to Graz for a meeting with Marko adds intrigue to the narrative.
Reports from the Austrian Kleine Zeitung newspaper suggest that Ricciardo made a trip to Graz to confer with Marko, a move that raises eyebrows considering Perez’s confirmed contract for the upcoming season.
When questioned about Perez’s job security, Marko responded, “Nothing is 100 percent certain in Formula 1.
“It just doesn’t exist. There are always performance-related situations somewhere that need to be discussed.
“We’ll take a look and discuss how to proceed in Zandvoort, then we’ll know more.”
Marko’s response leaves the door slightly ajar for potential shifts in the team’s lineup.
Ricciardo’s journey in Formula 1 has taken unexpected turns.
Following his departure from McLaren due to subpar performances last season, the 34-year-old Australian resurfaced as Red Bull’s reserve driver this year.
Just before the mid-season break, Ricciardo stepped into the spotlight once again, replacing Nyck de Vries at AlphaTauri.
The twist in his tale was compounded by his visit to Graz and his association with Heidi Berger, daughter of renowned Red Bull confidante Gerhard Berger.
Confirming their meeting, Marko acknowledged the encounter, stating, “We saw each other.
“That’s clear when he comes to Graz.
“He (Ricciardo) has a very positive personality, a successful career and incredible experience.
“His momentum and vigour caused a real jolt at AlphaTauri. It was a real boost of motivation.”
Marko’s words allude to the potential impact of Ricciardo’s presence and insights within the AlphaTauri team.
In the current landscape, it’s apparent that if no further developments unfold, Ricciardo stands poised for another season with AlphaTauri in 2024.
Marko underlined the importance of his feedback, mentioning, “There will be a major update at AlphaTauri and we will see whether the direction is right.
“A driver like Ricciardo will, of course, help enormously as he tells you exactly what is good and which updates are useless.”
Ricciardo’s wealth of experience and discerning input hold the potential to guide the team’s progress effectively.