The recent rant from Helmut Marko, the Red Bull advisor, has really caused the internet to overflow with articles either praising his comments or the opposite. And instead of clearing up things, for instance why Marko feels it necessary to call Fernando Alonso “too political”, Red Bull has apparently been transformed into a kindergarten.
It´s one thing to be a fast driver in decent, but not quite fast enough car, like the one Alonso was driving in the 2012 season, it´s another thing to be blamed for not praising the “right guy”. Ok, backstory…
Helmut Marko, who more and more seems to be making all the decisions at Red Bull these days, claims that during the 2012 campaign, Fernando Alonso played mindgames and was very political. Marko claims that comments made from Alonso, about how he was regarding Lewis Hamilton his biggest rival of 2012, was a clear sign of stress on the Spaniard´s part and that Alonso played psychological mindgames.
On January 10th, Marko said:
“Alonso is constantly involved in politics,” Marko told Red Bulletin magazine. “I believe we saw the stress he was under towards the end of the season. Saying things like, ‘I’m competing against (Lewis) Hamilton, not Vettel,’ and ‘I’m up against (Red Bull design chief Adrian) Newey,’ these psychological skirmishes. We said, ‘Just ignore him.’
And instead of doing just that and take his own advice, Marko then keeps going about how Alonso is not near as focused and able to shut out the world, as Vettel is.
“Sebastian’s driving was virtually flawless,” Marko added. “But he is a phenomenon: it is always like that. After the summer break, his performance curve shoots up. That’s what happened in previous years, too. I don’t know how he does it, but to keep doing it cannot be a coincidence.
“That brings us back to his method of preparation, the way he shuts himself off from the rest of the world, so that he can still call on reserves that other drivers might not have: Fernando Alonso, for example, who is busy with politics and funny comments.
“Vettel ignores it all, he doesn’t read the newspapers, or the internet. And that’s the point, we concentrate on our job: to make the fastest car and the best team possible.”
Right. I need to throw up. Over to Pitpass.com who jumped on the Red Bull bandwagon – better stay good friends with the world champions, right guys – where an article more than suggests, that Alonso has been groomed carefully to mimic the thoughts and even ideas from Ferrari president Luca Cordero di Montezemolo.
And what about Alonso himself?
“Who is (the) strongest driver? My answer is Hamilton,” Alonso said of Hamilton. “It was true last year, it was true this year. The strongest driver? It is a personal opinion, not political, not to make people think something. Who is the strongest opponent, the strongest driver on grid? Who is the one you have to keep an eye on? It is Hamilton, and it will still be Hamilton next year.”
“I don’t think I am good at politics. I just drive the car,” Alonso said. “Some recent remarks have surprised me, but I can’t see the sense in them. Some say they don’t read them, don’t hear them and don’t see them, before adding that they are not influenced by them. So clearly they do read them, maybe at night…”
Helmut Marko is an attention-seeking has-been, who does everything he can to talk even though no one is to listen to him. A solid advice would be to keep his mouth shut and do his job. Whatever that is, besides being in the way of real mechanics, engineers, drivers and team bosses, who are actually contributing to something.