Red Bull warned ‘the Christian Horner show’ has to end before ‘arrogance’ costs them Verstappen

Michelle Foster
Team boss Christian Horner and Max Verstappen in the Red Bull garage.

Red Bull have been dogged by headlines during the off-season.

F1 race winner Johnny Herbert has warned Red Bull the “Christian Horner show” has to end, and before he “arrogantly” costs the team Max Verstappen.

Despite Red Bull’s attempts to calm the storm that has raged since news broke in February that team boss Horner was under investigation for alleged inappropriate behaviour, the saga rumbles on.

Johnny Herbert: Do you want to lose Max? No!

According to the latest reports, the individual who made the complaint against Horner to Red Bull GmbH has submitted an official complaint to the FIA with reports she is also set to appeal after Red Bull’s parent company dismissed her grievance.

With Helmut Marko drawn into the saga through an investigation into the leaks, Red Bull’s triple World Champion Max Verstappen made it clear that if the Austrian was ousted, he too would walk as PlanetF1.com understands he has a clause in his contract tying his future to Marko’s.

And in the not-so-distant background there’s Mercedes, reportedly in the running to sign Verstappen as Lewis Hamilton’s replacement should he opt to leave Red Bull.

Letting him go would, according to former F1 driver Herbert, be a big mistake for Red Bull.

“If Christian is fighting this which he seems to be doing, he might force their main star out of the team,” he told news.com.au, per BetIdeas.com.

“It seems to be the wrong way of going about it. You want to keep what you’ve got. You want to keep Adrian and you want to keep Max.

“To try and arrogantly stay put, you’re going to force your main man out of the team. That just seems to be the wrong thing to do from a team perspective.

“That’s the Christian side of it where he’s fighting to stay where he is. And Helmut’s in the same position.

“But it seems the pressure is more on Helmut to get pushed out of the team and Max would go with him, potentially.

“If you look at it in a logical way, do you want to lose Max? No.”

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‘The Christian Horner show is something that’s got to come to an end’

But with it looking at is Horner still stay on as Red Bull team boss, Herbert has joined the call for the 50-year-old to step down.

“He seems to have the support of (Red Bull majority owner) Chalerm Yoovidhya, who’s got the 51 per cent,” he said.

“Red Bull is an advertising machine and it works brilliantly when you start winning races and championships.

“It’s not affected anything on track but down the line, it could rip it apart quite easily. And ripping it apart seems a very dumb thing to do when you’re trying to put a patch, a band-aid over the would that’s there at the moment.

“I think it’s quite a simple fix in many respects. The Christian Horner show is something that’s got to come to an end.”

It has been suggested the Horner saga could cost the team not only Verstappen but also Newey.

Amidst reports he’s unhappy with the situation at Red Bull, Herbert believes if Verstappen ties his future with anyone, it should be with the 25-time championship-winning designer.

“Does he realistically feel that going to Merc gives him the chance to carry on the dominance he’s got at the moment with a car that’s going to give him a chance to win races?” the Briton added.

“But then you think, is that the right thing as a driver for your career? What’s going to give you the best chance of winnings races?

“If Adrian stays at Red Bull, then you stay at Red Bull. Let’s say if Adrian goes to Merc, you go to Merc. As a package, that would be a smart move. But it’s about what Adrian decides to do.”

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