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Helmut Marko

Marko: FIA seem to be looking at Mercedes' rear wing

Helmut Marko has indicated that the FIA are taking a closer look at Mercedes' rear wing in Qatar this weekend.

Marko Qatar
To news overview © rn365/michaelpotts

"A protest is the last resort"

Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has said that the FIA appear to be looking more closely at Mercedes' rear wing at this weekend's Qatar Grand Prix, claiming "there is definitely something going on".

Marko's comments follow on from Red Bull team boss Christian Horner threatening to lodge a protest, which Mercedes counterpart Toto Wolff has brushed off.

Speaking to Sky Sport Germany after the first day of practice at the Losail International Circuit, Marko said: "Hamilton's engine is simply a rocket, but the hassle over the rear wing is not over yet.

"First of all, we hope that the FIA will look at the rear wing. That seems to be the case. A protest is the very last resort, but there is definitely something going on."

Asked if Mercedes have been making changes amid the protest threat, Marko replied: "It is difficult to tell from the outside, but we can see it from the data. At least there is movement."

A solid first day of practice

Red Bull finished third and eighth respectively on Friday's combined timesheets in Qatar, with Max Verstappen leading the team's charge, 0.350s down on the pace set by Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas.

Reflecting on the day, Marko said: "Everything is normal, but we had a bit of a problem with the temperature changes between the first and the second free practice. We lost a bit of the balance, but we'll get it back.

"It seems that the tyres are a bit too hard, especially in combination with the temperature changes. But there will be more rubber on the track in the coming days.

"The most important thing is how to keep the tyres good for the last corner. If you have grip there, it makes a big difference on the long straight."

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