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Helmut Marko

Marko hits out at Mercedes for being 'sore losers'

Red Bull's Helmut Marko has criticised Mercedes after they lodged two post-race protests at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

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To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool / Getty Images

Mercedes behaved like "sore losers" after Lewis Hamilton missed out on the world title to Max Verstappen in Sunday's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, according to Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko.

Verstappen clinched the championship in dramatic circumstances as he capitalised on a late Safety Car period to pit for Soft tyres and overhaul Hamilton - who stuck with aged Hards - in a one-lap sprint to the finish.

Mercedes lodged two separate post-race protests, one against Verstappen and the other against the result of the Grand Prix - relating to unlapped cars and the procedures under the Safety Car.

"I think they are sore losers"

Both protests were ultimately thrown out by the stewards and Marko has criticised Mercedes for taking such action.

"What happened is unworthy of a world title race," Marko told media, including RacingNews365.com.

"It says a lot about their mentality. I think they are sore losers. That's their attitude, it's been like that all season.

"We don't care, we are the moral winners - whether it comes left or right."

As for the confusion over the regulations, Marko said: "They need to be simplified. It cannot be that the rules are interpreted differently every time. The starting point must be to let them race."

"It felt a little bit desperate"

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner, having already praised the stewards for "coming to the right decision", backed up Marko's comments.

"[The protests] obviously felt a little bit desperate," said Horner. "We didn't want it to finish in front of the stewards."

He continued: "They've [Mercedes] been great competitors this year and Lewis has been a phenomenal driver.

"It's had its moments, it's been tense, it's been tough, but we're just delighted with the outcome and we're very proud of Max, who's been phenomenal this year."

Following the stewards' verdict, Mercedes have confirmed their intention to appeal.

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