Christian Horner criticises ‘not very clever’ Kevin Magnussen move in Sergio Perez Monaco shunt

Jamie Woodhouse
The scene as Kevin Magnussen sends Sergio Perez into a crash at the 2024 Monaco Grand Prix.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull, crashes in Monaco.

Red Bull boss Christian Horner was not best pleased with Kevin Magnussen in Monaco, who eliminated Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg in a “not very clever” incident.

The Monaco Grand Prix was red flagged on the opening lap with Red Bull driver Perez and the Haas duo of Hulkenberg and Magnussen involved in a huge shunt, Perez’s Red Bull obliterated after being tagged into the barriers by Magnussen on the the hill out of Ste. Devote.

Christian Horner ‘surprised’ over no Kevin Magnussen investigation

Additional reporting by Sam Cooper

Magnussen’s team-mate Hulkenberg was also caught up and eliminated in the incident, though the stewards decided that no investigation was needed, much to the relief of Magnussen who sits two penalty points away from a one-race ban.

This decision from the stewards baffled Horner, who branded Magnussen’s move “not very clever” and one which wrecked the race of his team-mate, not only Perez’s.

“I was surprised it wasn’t investigated because it was quite a hefty incident,” Horner told media including PlanetF1.com.

“Kevin had a wheel up the inside in a part of the track that only ever narrows and you would have expected him to back out and not only has he destroyed Checo’s race and the car, he’s also destroyed his team-mate’s race, so not very clever.”

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Asked if he has any prognosis at this stage on the extent of the damage to Perez’s RB20, Horner replied: “I don’t know on the engine and the chassis, but obviously a significant accident. So it’s a costly one, very costly.”

Nonetheless, Horner stressed that the most important part is that Perez escaped a “horrible looking incident” unharmed.

“It was a horrible looking accident,” he said, “and of course, your heart is in your mouth at that point and immediate focus is on the safety of the driver.

“And thankfully, you know, cars can be fixed. But the structure and the Halo and everything did its job, so that’s the most important thing, that Checo was able to walk away from what looked like a very nasty incident unscathed.”

After a rough outing at Imola, Perez was chasing a strong Monaco performance as he enters a crucial period when it comes to pushing for a Red Bull contract extension, but suffering a Q1 elimination was not the platform he was wanting for the race weekend.

And Horner, describing the weekend as “brutal” for Perez, did not deny that Red Bull need both cars delivering in the face of sterner competition emerging at the front, Ferrari and McLaren having accounted for the top four positions in Monaco, while Red Bull’s Championship leader Max Verstappen finished P6.

“Well, look, I mean, this weekend’s been pretty brutal for him,” said Horner when asked how much of a concern Perez’s Monaco performance is?

“And yeah, I mean, obviously, we need to make sure that we’ve got both cars up there scoring points, because we cannot dismiss the threat of Ferrari and McLaren in both championships.”

Ferrari has narrowed Red Bull’s Constructors’ Championship lead to just 24 points after Charles Leclerc claimed victory on home soil in Monaco, while Carlos Sainz secured P3.

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