Red Bull Motorsport Advisor Helmut Marko has hit back at former F1 driver Ralf Schumacher over criticism suggesting he "has a problem with the Schumacher name".
The German, who raced for Jordan, Williams and Toyota during his race-winning career, made the comments ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix when suggesting nephew Mick was snubbed when AlphaTauri searched for a new driver to fill the vacancy created by Pierre Gasly's move to Alpine.
Schumacher, who was dropped by Haas at the end of last term following two years with the team, has found a home as Mercedes' reserve driver this season and is assisting Lewis Hamilton and George Russell in improving the performance of the struggling W14.
In his criticism, his uncle had said: "It seems that Helmut Marko has a problem with the Schumacher name.
“Even though I have good exchanges with him personally, it seems he has some problem with Mick because otherwise, it’s not understandable to me why it didn’t work out from the beginning."
Viewed by others:
Michael is the greatest
AlphaTauri instead opted to employ former Mercedes Formula E World Champion Nyck de Vries, with the Dutchman coming under fire in the early stages of the campaign after a number of incident-packed weekends.
Issuing a retort to Schumacher's criticism, Marko told OE24: "I have no problem with the name Schumacher.
"For me, Michael Schumacher is the greatest, and I talk to Ralf regularly. But there's one thing he gets confused about: Our F1 program is based on performance, not marketing."