Triple world champion Verstappen grabbed the final pole position of the year at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with a convincing performance in qualifying.
It followed a difficult final practice in which Verstappen was off the pace after complaining about the balance and handling of his Red Bull.
But set-up changes between the two sessions proved key as Verstappen went on to beat Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc to his 12th pole of a dominant 2023 campaign.
Following the chequered flag, an amusing team radio exchange between the Dutchman and team principal Horner on the Red Bull pit wall took place, revealing a bet had taken place.
Marko placed a €500 wager with Horner that Verstappen would not make the front row after his FP3 struggles.
“Well done mate. You’ve just won me €500 euros from Helmut [Marko], which is like getting blood out of a stone,” Horner said.
Verstappen replied: “Helmut lost a bet? What world are we living in?
Horner went on to explain: “The bet was for you to be on the front row.”
To which, Verstappen responded: “Ha ha, nice.”
Speaking in the post-qualifying press conference, Verstappen joked: “I think Helmut learned his lesson - never bet against me!
“Of course it was a bit of a gamble because you don't know. We try a lot of things on the car, which didn't really seem to solve the problem.
“But yeah, I think GP stayed calm and he definitely went through a lot of options. And then with my feedback, he came up with a with a very good set-up for qualifying.
“So very, very happy with that. But of course it's always a bit of a gamble. You’re never 100% sure and missing FP1, probably would have still been tough to get it right for FP2 and FP3.”