Marko Offers Verstappen Update in Big Boost to Hamilton’s F1 Chances at Russian GP

Published 09/15/2021, 7:36 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 29, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates his first place on the podium REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

Both title contenders Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen are yet to opt for a fourth power unit this season, for which they will receive a grid penalty. And with the Dutchman already suffering a grid penalty, it seems Verstappen will use the fourth engine at Sochi.


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During the Italian GP, as Hamilton exited the pits, he found himself alongside Verstappen. The title protagonists went wheel to wheel and at turn  2, they made contact, which sent the Dutchman’s car into the air and over Hamilton’s car. Eventually, the stewards awarded a 3 grid penalty for Max Verstappen ahead of the Russian GP for causing the accident.

And more recently, Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has hinted at a further grid penalty for Max Verstappen at the Russian Grand Prix.


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What did Helmut Marko say?

As quoted by Give Me Sport, Helmut Marko isn’t ruling out the possibility that Red Bull may take a new power unit for Max Verstappen ahead of the Russian Grand Prix.

“That has not yet been decided. But I do think that you can overtake rather well in Sochi,” said the Milton-Keynes-based team advisor, Helmut Marko.

SPIELBERG, AUSTRIA – Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner, Red Bull Racing Team Consultant Dr. Helmut Marko, and Renault Sport F1 Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul talk on the grid before the Formula One Grand Prix of Austria at Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

“Sochi has been a Mercedes track in the past, but we have been competitive everywhere this year. So if everything works together perfectly, then we can also challenge Mercedes there.”

Hamilton stopped giving Max Verstappen space post-Silverstone: Christijan Albers

After a wheel-to-wheel battle on the opening lap of the British Grand Prix, the two title contenders collided at the Copse corner, which sent Max Verstappen flying into the tire barrier and out of the race in an impact that measured 51G.

Meanwhile, Former Formula 1 driver, Christijan Albers, believes the seven-time world champion, Lewis Hamilton, was always the one to give space to Verstappen, until the British Grand Prix.

“If you go and look at Imola, with the race start, you also see that he actually just pushes Hamilton to the outside. If you go and look at Barcelona exactly the same,” said Christijan Albers.


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“If you look at Silverstone with the sprint race and the first few corners until they get to Copse. He takes the high road every time. And you can see that Hamilton has to continually cash in and he does go more to the safe side.”

Formula One F1 – British Grand Prix – Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone, Britain – July 18, 2021. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen leads at the start of the race ahead of Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton REUTERS/Peter Cziborra.

“Lewis always gave the millimeters and centimeters to Max, but eventually you have to draw a line. And since Silverstone, that has happened,” concluded the former F1 driver.


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Should Max Verstappen opt for a fourth power unit at the Russian Grand Prix? What do you think? Let us know in the comments section below.



Pingaksh Sharma

263 articles

Pingaksh Sharma is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been following this sport since India hosted the Grand Prix in 2012 and has been an ardent supporter of the eventual race winner, Sebastian Vettel. He is also a fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull and hopes the former breaks the Lewis Hamilton dominance.