Christian Horner makes Red Bull roles clear; Felipe Massa case provokes strong response – F1 news round-up

Sam Cooper
Felipe Massa and Christian Horner

Felipe Massa made headlines after submitting his legal case against F1.

Today in the F1 news, Christian Horner set out who was top dog in the Red Bull team and the world reacted to Felipe Massa’s legal case.

With a bit of a gap now between races, it was time to turn attention to other matters as Massa’s legal case rocked the F1 world yesterday.

Christian Horner’s defiant call to Red Bull rebels

Horner appears to be over the worst when it comes to attempts to oust him from his team principal spot and with his position secured, he wants everyone to know he is the boss.

After Max Verstappen appeared to threaten to quit, Horner said no one was bigger than Red Bull.

“No individual is bigger than the team,” he said.

“We have a phenomenal car. We’ve got one seat open for next year. I have probably got 16 drivers that are desperate to be in that car for next year.”

Read more: ‘I lead this team’ – Christian Horner makes his, Verstappen and Marko Red Bull roles clear

Felipe Massa’s legal case ‘ridiculous’ by former McLaren staffer

Massa confirmed he had filed a suit against various F1 parties yesterday but his decision to do so was branded “ridiculous” by former McLaren head of comms Matt Bishop.

Bishop believed someone had convinced Massa to do so and the point of the suit is money, not titles.

“I know Felipe Massa. He’s a fine driver, and is a nice guy.

“But my view – and this is my speculation, I’m not speaking from absolute certain knowledge – I think somebody’s got their shovel under him and has said: ‘We can do something for you here, we can earn you a lot of money.’

“And, of course, what they really want to do is earn themselves a lot of money, probably lawyers.

Read more: Felipe Massa blasted for ‘ridiculous’ F1 2008 title case: ‘He just wants a wedge of wonga’

Key to Lewis Hamilton’s Ferrari move revealed

While winning races will quickly endear Lewis Hamilton to the Ferrari faithful, former race engineer Rob Smedley believes there is another secret weapon the future driver could employ.

“ I think Lewis is a driver that will absolutely thrive in that environment,” he told PlanetF1.com.

“He has a duty to himself and to his employer, to embed himself as much as he can, to integrate himself into the community. If he can learn to speak a little bit of Italian, they will absolutely adore him for it. But whatever he puts in – if he puts 100 percent in, he’ll get 100 percent back.”

Read more: How Lewis Hamilton can get Ferrari Tifosi to ‘absolutely adore’ him

Question marks raised about Lando Norris’ jump start

Anyone watching as the lights went out in Jeddah would have spotted the papaya car of Lando Norris jump forward before quickly stopping.

What looked like a slam dunk penalty for a jump start was ignored by the stewards who said the McLaren driver was not picked up by the sensors.

It was a sequence that left Sky Sports pundit Anthony Davidson baffled.

“He jumps and is clearly outside of the start box. And from my understanding of the rules, I’m no driver steward, but if you start when you’re outside of the box then that’s a penalty,” he said.

“Maybe because he stopped the car and, looking at it in a sporting context, he really lost out from that jump start.

“Maybe they took pity on him. I don’t know, but I’d really love to speak to the stewards to understand their theory and thoughts behind that one.”

Read more: F1 pundits baffled by stewards ‘sympathy’ over clear Lando Norris jump start

Mercedes chief ‘evaluating the options’ over possible Ferrari move

With Hamilton already confirmed as heading to Ferrari another name that seems likely to join him is Toto Wolff’s second in command Jérôme d’Ambrosio.

The Belgian is reported to have agreed a deal with the Scuedria but Wolff said he was “evaluating the options.”

“I think he’s with us at the moment and the situation is more personal reasons that he’s evaluating the options of what to do and I think it’s something he should speak about,” said Wolff.

“But all is good, all is good, we’ll see what happens.”

Read more: Key Toto Wolff lieutenant ‘evaluating options’ with chance to follow Lewis Hamilton to Ferrari