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Marko: Poor reliability the only reason Webber got near Vettel in F1 2010

Having held his tongue for a while, controversial Red Bull motorsport advisor Dr. Helmut Marko has unleashed his latest veiled attack on Mark Webber - claiming it was only Sebastian Vettel's poor reliability in F1 2010 that allowed the Australian to challenge for the crown
Seldom shy of expressing his opinions – even when they fly in the face of all conventional wisdom – controversial Red Bull motorsport advisor Dr. Helmut Marko has claimed that Mark Webber would never have got near enough to challenge his team-mate Sebastian Vettel for the F1 2010 World Championship crown had it not been for the young German's chronic ill-fortune in the reliability stakes.

Vettel and Webber endured a distinctly frosty relationship last season, highlighted by notable flashpoints such as Istanbul and Silverstone – but the fact that both remained in the title chase right down to the Abu Dhabi finale posed a problem for Red Bull Racing, with questions arising as to whether or not Webber, as the then better-placed of the pair, should be favoured.

In the end, of course, the energy drinks-backed outfit stuck steadfastly to its policy of favouring neither driver over the other and of refusing to implement team orders – unlike some of its rivals – and that dogged persistence in the face of considerable criticism and opposition was vindicated by Webber's off-colour form in the UAE and Vettel's imperious charge to championship glory.

Marko, however, suggests that without the kind of mechanical mishaps that cost the sport's new youngest-ever title-winner valuable points in Bahrain, Australia, Barcelona and Korea, Vettel – who set an astonishing ten pole positions over the course of the campaign, five more than any other driver – would have been home-and-dry and well beyond Webber's reach long before Yas Marina, and that consequently the issue of 'team orders' would never have been raised.

“Without the 66 points he lost due to technical defects, the stand-off with Mark Webber would never have occurred,” the Austrian – Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz's right-hand man and widely-perceived to be a key Vettel supporter inside the team – told Sport Bild, suggesting that the 23-year-old's true dominance last year was masked by the fragility of the equipment underneath him.

And even though team orders have now been legalised by the FIA for 2011 in the wake of the well-documented Hockenheim fracas, Marko insisted RBR will not be altering its approach.

“We don't use them because the sporting aspect should be the primary focus of F1,” the 67-year-old stressed.



Related Pictures

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Race, Mark Webber (AUS), Red Bull Racing, RB6
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Saturday Practice, Mark Webber (AUS), Red Bull Racing, RB6
Saturday Practice, Mark Webber (AUS), Red Bull Racing, RB6
Race, Mark Webber (AUS), Red Bull Racing, RB6 2nd position and Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6 race winner
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Race, Mark Webber (AUS), Red Bull Racing, RB6 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6
Friday Practice 1, Helmut Marko (AUT), Red Bull Racing, Red Bull Advisor and Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6
Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6 race winner and 2010 Champion and Helmut Marko, Red Bull Adviser
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50 Cent - Unregistered

January 27, 2011 4:19 PM

I don't get it. Why would an intelligent person utter a statement like that. Even if you don't like Webb he is still working for RB and did an awesome job for you. Someone put a muzzle on his mouth please.

brendan - Unregistered

January 27, 2011 4:29 PM

they dont do team orders? do me a favour this whole article proves that its a 1 man team. which is fine but dont lie about it you could argue without newey the team wouldnt of got near a race win yet....frankly i find the team a bit of a joke, they had by far the best car and at times a second quicker than mclaren and ferrari yet alonso and lewis nearly won the title. i cant think of anyone who looks at vettel and thinks wow what a champion. like they do with lewis, fernando and michael



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