Christian Horner breaks his silence after Red Bull investigation concludes

Michelle Foster
Red Bull team boss Christian Horner hugging Max Verstappen

Christian Horner hugs Max Verstappen.

Arriving in Bahrain as a grievance against him was dismissed after a Red Bull investigation, Christian Horner says the unity within the team “has never been stronger”.

Red Bull GmbH announced on the eve of the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix that Horner had been cleared of any wrongdoing after being investigated for inappropriate behaviour, something he always denied.

Announcing in a brief statement that the “grievance has been dismissed”, Red Bull’s parent company refused to share additional details or the investigation report as it is “confidential and contains the private information of the parties”.

Christian Horner was cleared in Red Bull’s investigation

The Briton has since arrived at the Sakhir circuit, reportedly flying in with Red Bull’s motorsport advisor Helmut Marko, and is ready to lead the team as they begin their latest title defence.

“I’m just pleased that the process is over,” he told Sky Sports on Thursday morning. “I obviously can’t comment about it.

“Here, very much the focus now is on the Grand Prix and the season ahead, and trying to defend both of our titles.”

Asked if he felt this was now the end of the matter, he said: “I can’t give you any further comment but the process has been conducted and concluded.”

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Neither the 50-year-old nor Red Bull have revealed any details of the investigation, which is something former F1 driver turned pundit Martin Brundle has questioned if that’s the right course of action.

“I think the problem of making no comment whatsoever on what may or may not have happened is that mud sticks,” he told Sky Sports.

“It’s been a global story, I think it’s been a damaging story for Christian and Red Bull and all of Formula 1.”

It’s a story that has made headlines since De Telegraaf revealed in the build-up to the team’s launch of the RB20 that the team boss was under investigation.

Asked if it was a regret that the matter had become public, Horner replied: “Again, I’m not going to be able to give you any further comment on it but I’m pleased to be here in Bahrain with the team focused on the year ahead.”

As for the unity within Red Bull, he insisted: “Within the team, it has never been stronger.”

Horner was spotted sharing a hug with his triple World Champion Max Verstappen as he arrived in the Bahrain paddock on Thursday.

The day prior the Dutchman had spoken of Horner’s importance to the team, telling the media including PlanetF1.com: “I think he is very important, otherwise he wouldn’t be in that position for such a long time.

“Let’s say if your team boss disappears for whatever reason for one or two races, not much is going to happen because everyone is in their role and they know what they have to do in the short term but it’s all about people management over time.

“Then of course, things will start to be different if you know one of the leaders starts to not be there anymore, but we’re not thinking like that.

“Like I said before, we just trust the process that we are in as a team, see what the outcome will be and besides that, at the moment everyone is just very focused on the performance here at the track and everyone is in a good mood and just excited to get going again.”

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