Jos Verstappen continues war of words against Christian Horner with future prediction

Michelle Foster
A boxing-style head-to-head collage featuring Jos Verstappen and Christian Horner

Jos Verstappen has called for Christian Horner to leave Red Bull

Jos Verstappen has doubled down on his claim that it would be “bad” if Christian Horner stayed on as Red Bull’s team boss, but he expects he will “for the rest of the season”.

Although the Horner investigation was dismissed last week after a lengthy internal examination into his alleged behaviour, ten days later F1 headlines don’t make for happy reading at Red Bull.

Jos Verstappen believes Christian Horner will stay on, for now

Horner continues to be grilled about the investigation, especially after an email was leaked that claimed to continue information relating to the investigation, while on Friday night in Saudi Arabia, Red Bull motorsport advisor Helmut Marko admitted a “theoretical possibility exists” that he could be suspended.

PlanetF1.com understands an internal investigation is underway at Red Bull GmbH – of whom Marko is an employee and not of Red Bull Racing – due to the various leaks of information made to the media since the beginning of the separate internal investigation into Christian Horner.

This includes an investigation into the email leak of alleged information that was sent last week to hundreds of senior F1 personnel, including the media, which set out to humiliate Horner – coming just 24 hours after Red Bull GmbH ended their investigation into the F1 team boss.

And in the midst of all Verstappen Snr continues to call for Horner to step down, statements that have cast doubt on his son’s future with the Milton Keynes squad.

Verstappen Snr doubled down on his claims that it would be “bad” for Red Bull if Horner stayed on as team principal. He, however, reckons the Briton will see out the year with the team.

“All these things that are going on are having an influence on Max,” he told the Daily Mail ahead of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Pointing out his son’s performances in Jeddah where Max claimed pole position, he added: “All we hear about is Horner and what happened with his situation.

“In the press conference Horner gave the other day it was all about him and his problems when we should be talking about Max, the car, his performance and the race.

“I’ve already said I think it is causing problems if he stays.

“I think it’s too late for Christian to say ‘leave me alone’ but he has the support of the Thai owner so I think he will stay for the rest of the season.

“I said it would bad if he stayed, it really isn’t good for the team, this whole situation.”

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Asked if it was time to ‘draw a line’ under the situation as Horner called for in Thursday’s press conference, Verstappen Snr replied: “I think it’s a bit too late for that now.

“If that’s what he wants, fine, but I don’t think it will be possible. I don’t want to talk too much more as it will create problems.

“But the most important thing for me is that Max is happy, that’s what counts for me, I just want him to be happy.”

As for the woman who lodged the grievance against Horner, she has subsequently been suspended by Red Bull.

Asked for his thoughts on that, Verstappen Snr replied: “I sympathise with the woman, with all that she went through, but we will see what happens.

“Red Bull seem to know what they are doing with her, we will see. But I think it is for her to come out and see what happens.

“I’m not fully up to speed with what is happening with her.”

Meanwhile, the Marko investigation has cast further doubt over Max’s future with the team as the Dutchman has thrown his support behind the motorsport advisor.

“For me,” he told Sky Sports, “Helmut is a very key factor in that and he has to stay for me, for sure.

“I’ve always said that to the team, they know that.”

Read next: Max Verstappen: Red Bull know Helmut Marko must stay if I am to