Red Bull's motorsport advisor Helmut Marko insists that both its Formula 1 team's drivers are treated exactly the same, even though he has publicly blamed Mark Webber for trying to defend his position during his Turkish Grand Prix crash.
Webber and teammate Sebastian Vettel collided in their fight for the lead at Istanbul, throwing away the team's chances of taking the win, and handing victory to main title rivals McLaren. But although it has emerged that race leader Webber's position was compromised by having to turn his engine down to save fuel, while Vettel was allowed to attack him at full power, Marko is adamant both men are given a fair and equal chance.
"We are handling our team and both drivers in the same way," insisted Marko. "Vettel was under such pressure and if such a situation comes up -- you have to look after the team. We still could have been 1-2."
Marko says Vettel was allowed to attack Webber because there was no option to back him off - as Lewis Hamilton was right behind the Red Bull Racing drivers.
"It wasn't a situation where we were racing each other," said Marko. "We were under enormous pressure from the McLarens -- they were much faster on the straights so we had to gain our advantage in the corners.
"He had to attack, otherwise he would have got overtaken by Hamilton. It would have been completely different if the McLarens were 10-seconds behind, but that wasn't the case."
Asked for his views on the accident, Marko reckons that Vettel was in the right to turn across the track, even with Webber there, since the German had got his nose ahead.
"He [Vettel] was already ahead, at least two metres ahead, and there was a corner to the left side coming, so he had to go for the line," he said. "He cannot brake on the dirt because for sure he knows what happens.
"But it was unnecessary, the whole situation. We will talk with everybody quite clearly to make it not happen again."
Marko said that he had spoken to Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz and he explained the Austrian was "not amused" by the events of Turkey.