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Perez reveals clear the air talks with Marko

Perez reveals clear the air talks with Marko

Perez reveals clear the air talks with Marko

Perez reveals clear the air talks with Marko

Sergio Perez has confirmed that he accepted Helmut Marko’s apology after the Red Bull adviser made widely criticised remarks about his heritage and performance.

Perez has said that he met privately with the Austrian to discuss the incident and that now ‘we move on’.

After the recent Italian Grand Prix, Marko had told Austrian outlet Servus TV: “It was certainly one of the better weekends, and we know he has issues in qualifying.

“He experiences fluctuations in form; he's South American, and his mental focus isn't as consistent as it was with Max [Verstappen] or Sebastian [Vettel].”

Not only did Marko confuse Perez’s Mexican nationality with being South American, his comment implied that the driver’s heritage negatively impacted his performance.

The remark has been widely decried as offensive, and Marko has issued a public apology.

Aside from his public statement, it appears Marko apologised to Perez personally, and he and the driver resolved the issue.

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: Verstappen setup quirk which allows Red Bull to make car even faster

Helmut Marko suggested Sergio Perez's mental focus is not as consistent as that of Max Verstappen

Ahead of the upcoming Singapore Grand Prix, Perez said that the pair had a ‘private’ conversation about the matter and that when it comes to the comments about his heritage, Marko ‘doesn’t mean it’ in an offensive way.

Perez said: “I had a private conversation with him. He did apologise and that, to me, was the main thing.

“Basically, we move on, I have a personal relationship with him. And I think you can always have those feelings when you have that sort of talk – knowing the person helps a lot because I know he doesn’t mean it that way.

“I took his apology because I know from the personal relationships that we’ve had, that he doesn’t mean it that way.”

Perez: I wasn’t offended

The Mexican driver added that as Marko did not mean the comments in an offensive manner, he was not particularly offended by them.

Asked if he took offence, he responded: “Not at all, if I’m totally honest. He doesn’t mean it that way, and I didn’t get offended at all, personally.

"Let’s say, if those comments were from a different perspective or so on, I would have taken them differently. But, for me, it’s just how things are, and I didn’t take them personally.

“When you read them, in isolation, they can be very disrespectful. But, like I say, knowing Helmut and having that personal relationship, helped me to understand him. He gave me a personal apology.”

Marko's public statement

Marko has also publicly apologised for his comments. He said in a statement to ServusTV Sport and Talkt: "I would like to apologise for my offensive remark and want to make it absolutely clear that I do not believe that we can generalise about the people from any country, any race, any ethnicity.

"I was trying to make a point that Checo has fluctuated in his performance this year, but it was wrong to attribute this to his cultural heritage."

Other figures at the team have distanced themselves from the remarks. Sky Sports News' Craig Slater reported: "I have been in touch with some senior figures at Red Bull racing who want to make clear they in no way condone these sentiments and want to distance themselves from the remarks. The teams values reject xenophobia and racism in all its forms."

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: Albon EXCITED by new Williams F1 project as star driver enjoys extra responsibility

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