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marko addresses striking rumour of sainz ferrari exit

Marko: "Why would Ferrari say goodbye to Sainz? That makes no sense"

22 April at 16:00
Last update 22 April at 19:31

Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz's contracts at Ferrari both run until the end of 2024. The former has long been linked in the rumour circuit with a departure to Mercedes, while there is also increasing talk of the 28-year-old Spaniard's future. Those reports have not escaped Helmut Marko's notice either, but the Red Bull advisor is mostly light-hearted about it.

Sainz is said to be high on Audi's wish list, although there has been no contact, according to the Madrileen. He called the rumour "totally nonsense". The Spanish newspaper El Nacional, on the other hand, wrote that Ferrari is dissatisfied with Sainz and that the Italian formation might terminate his contract early because they are 'tired of his excuses'. Marko believes none of that.

"Anyone can put anything on the net these days, more or less. It has been a long time since messages could be controlled. Why would Ferrari say goodbye to Carlos? That makes no sense. Carlos is doing well. Ferrari has other problems than worrying about Sainz," the 79-year-old Austrian told F1-Insider.

The German medium even goes a bit further, reporting from its own sources that Leclerc in particular is a source of unrest in Maranello. The current number 10 in the World Championship is said to have little to no confidence in his team anymore. So although Leclerc's contract will continue for another year and a half or so, an early exit is not completely out of the question.

In fact, Marko does not rule out a performance clause in Leclerc's contract. "That is common these days. It roughly states that a driver must have a certain number of points by a certain point in the season, usually in late summer. If not, both parties have the option to terminate the contract. In 2015, our Sebastian Vettel was able to switch to Ferrari so easily for that reason."