Christian Horner cleared by Red Bull as F1 2024 preparations ramp up – F1 news round-up

Henry Valantine
Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal. F1 news

Christian Horner was cleared by Red Bull GmbH after allegations of inappropriate behaviour were made against him.

Christian Horner dominated the F1 news headlines when Red Bull GmbH cleared the Red Bull team principal in their investigation into alleged inappropriate behaviour.

Horner is understood to have flown out to Bahrain with Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko, with the results of the investigation having been made public on Wednesday evening in Sakhir through a statement from Red Bull’s headquarters.

With additional reporting from Thomas Maher on the ground in Sakhir, here’s a look at the main headlines to dominate proceedings from the day in Bahrain, with one standout.

Christian Horner cleared of inappropriate behaviour allegations

After the day’s press conferences took place in Bahrain, Red Bull GmbH confirmed that Horner had been cleared of the allegations against him, said to have been made by an employee.

While maintaining the complainant has the right of appeal against the independent barrister’s verdict, Red Bull have enabled Horner to continue in his duties.

Red Bull GmbH’s statement read: “The independent investigation into the allegations made against Mr Horner is complete, and Red Bull can confirm that the grievance has been dismissed.

“The complainant has a right of appeal. Red Bull is confident that the investigation has been fair, rigorous and impartial. The investigation report is confidential and contains the private information of the parties and third parties who assisted in the investigation, and therefore we will not be commenting further out of respect for all concerned. Red Bull will continue striving to meet the highest workplace standards.”

Read more: Christian Horner cleared by Red Bull investigation and keeps team principal role

Fernando Alonso hints at possible retirement if schedule is too demanding

Fernando Alonso was once again asked about the rumours linking him to Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes seat once the seven-time World Champion makes the move to Ferrari.

But rather than fanning the flames and looking to spark more conversation about his credentials, Alonso said he is going to look at how he feels once this record-breaking season gets going and whether or not he wants to continue altogether.

“Well, first of all, I need to decide if I want to keep racing, that will be the first thing that I need to decide in a few weeks or a few races,” Alonso told media including in Bahrain.

“I feel great now, but I know it’s a demanding calendar and in 2026 there are a different set of regulations as well, which maybe are tempting or maybe not, I don’t know.

“But this year, as I said in the car launch, I will wait a few races to decide.”

Read more: Fernando Alonso drops possible retirement hint when questioned about Mercedes seat

Lewis Hamilton puts timeline on off-season turning ‘upside down’

Having revealed the option to join Ferrari came about in the new year, Lewis Hamilton admitted his pre-season preparations had already been different while amicably transitioning between management teams, but then the Scuderia came along.

“Then January, everything kind of turned upside down in terms of when the option came up and a lot of time alone, trying to make sure you’re doing your due diligence and you’re making the right decision for yourself, and I feel like I’ve made the right decision,” he told media including


“I’m really looking forward to that new challenge. It’s lots of different emotions that you will experience through that challenge. But it’s one I’m really excited about.”

Read more: Lewis Hamilton reveals timeline when ‘everything kind of turned upside down’

Daniel Ricciardo downplays RB expectations with previous performance jump examples

Daniel Ricciardo has spoken about RB’s potential this season and, while some are expecting Red Bull’s sister squad to make the biggest jump of any team compared to last season, the eight-time Grand Prix winner doesn’t quite see it that way.

“We’ll get our answer in 48 hours but I think some people think we’re going to the Aston of last year or the pink Mercedes of a few years ago,” he told the media, including “Let’s see.

“I would love to surprise myself and be fighting for a podium but I would say once we get the result of the weekend, people will calm down.

“Obviously we do have some components that we’re allowed to use and things like that but it is not to the level that I think some people are thinking or hoping.”

Read more: Daniel Ricciardo puts Red Bull rumours into ‘perspective’ amidst ‘pink Mercedes’ debate

Huge profit boost reported by F1 owners

Formula 1’s owners Liberty Media reported the sport’s financial figures for 2023 on Wednesday, with a massive $392million [£310m] overall profit reported for the calendar year.

That represents a 64% increase on 2022 figures, with their overall income of $3.22billion [£2.55bn] representing a 25% increase on their 2022 end-of-year figure.

Liberty revealed that the introduction of the Las Vegas Grand Prix played its part in that, with F1 acting as both commercial rights holder and promoter for the high-value race that was brought back to the calendar for the first time in over 40 years.

Read more: Las Vegas influence credited as F1 reports huge 64% profit boost and mega 2023 income