Red Bull F1 Exec Helmut Marko Wanted Drivers to Catch Coronavirus on Purpose

With the racing season on hold, it's an "ideal time" to get infected, according to Marko

Red Bull F1 Boss Wanted Drivers to Catch Coronavirus on Purpose
Red Bull racing team consultant Dr. Helmut Marko.
Bryn Lennon/Formula 1 via Getty
By Evan Bleier / March 31, 2020 7:30 am

A former race car driver who is now a consultant for Red Bull’s Formula 1 team recommended that the drivers he oversees should intentionally try to become infected with COVID-19.

In 76-year-old Helmut Marko’s mind, now would be the “ideal time” for his drivers to become sick because F1 has been postponed and they’d have plenty of time to recover before racing again.

“We have four Formula 1 drivers, and eight or 10 juniors,” Marko told Austrian broadcaster ORF. “The idea was to organize a camp where we could bridge this mentally and physically bridge the dead time [with sports everywhere suspended]. And that would be the ideal time for the infection to come. These are all strong young men in really good health. That way they would be prepared whenever the action starts. And you can be ready for what will probably be a very tough championship once it starts.”

Thankfully for his drivers as well as anyone who believes in common sense, Red Bull officials were not too enthused with Marko’s suggestion. “Let’s put it this way, it has not been well received,” he said.

The first eight races of the F1 season have already been canceled or postponed. F1’s next Grand Prix is slated to be raced in Canada on June 14, but it seems likely that will change.

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