Red Bull driver breaks silence on Helmut Marko threat

Red Bull have dominated Formula 1 since the new aero regulations were introduced in 2022, with Max Verstappen proving imperious.

Red Bull Junior academy driver Enzo Fittipaldi has admitted that he’s yet to hear about advisor Dr. Helmut Marko wanting to reduce the number of drivers the team supports, with him remaining “focused” on his job.

Fittipaldi is currently competing in Formula 2, a championship which is filled by Red Bull liveries.

The Austrians have a heavy presence in the junior category, but not for much longer.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner recently confirmed that Marko is looking to axe several of their drivers in F2, in order to focus on drivers in an earlier stage of their racing career.

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As things stand, Fittipaldi is unaware of what Red Bull have planned for their junior roster.

“I haven’t actually seen that,” Fittipaldi told The Mirror.

“I’m just focused on doing my job in my Formula 2 season and securing great results until the end of the season.”

Fittipaldi is currently seventh in the Drivers’ Championship and claimed his first F2 victory recently at Spa-Francorchamps, after beating Richard Verschoor in the sprint race.

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He went on to claim a podium in the feature race at the historic venue.

With the way Red Bull’s junior system is currently looking, it’s unlikely that Fittipaldi will be rewarded with a seat at AlphaTauri anytime soon.

Fittipaldi is some way behind Liam Lawson and Ayumu Iwasa in the Red Bull pecking order, with the duo likely to make the step to F1 very soon.

Lawson was a contender to replace the sacked Nyck de Vries; however, Marko wasn’t wanting to disrupt the New Zealander’s maiden campaign in Super Formula.

Despite this, Lawson is heavily tipped to be promoted to the Faenza-based team in 2024, likely to replace Daniel Ricciardo who’ll perhaps return to Red Bull in his development driver role.

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Iwasa is another driver who will likely race for AlphaTauri in the next few seasons, potentially when Yuki Tsunoda eventually leaves the team.

Tsunoda’s name has been linked to Aston Martin for 2026, with Honda rumoured to be wanting a Japanese driver.

Overall, Red Bull do have too many drivers of a similar age in their academy, something which has resulted in the stalling of some careers.