Toto Wolff wary of ‘power fight’ image in fresh Christian Horner assessment

Jamie Woodhouse
Toto Wolff in the Bahrain paddock.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff batted away the idea of applying pressure on Formula 1 and the FIA in the wake of Red Bull’s Christian Horner investigation, saying that will diminish the topic to a “power fight” between teams.

Red Bull Racing’s parent company Red Bull GmbH recently concluded an internal investigation into team principal Christian Horner regarding his behaviour, Horner having denied all allegations with Red Bull ultimately clearing him of any wrongdoing.

Toto Wolff does not want to create F1 ‘power fight’ image

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher

However, in the aftermath of Red Bull’s concluding statement, Wolff and McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown called for greater “transparency” regarding the investigation, which Formula 1 and governing body the FIA are yet to comment on.

And so when speaking to media including, Wolff was asked whether the teams could look to exert their influence and pursue this clarity?

Wolff though is not comfortable with that idea, believing this would do the topic, the handling of which is “very critical for Formula 1”, a disservice and reduce it to a “power fight” between the F1 teams.

“As a team, if we go beyond what we’ve said, it looks like a battle between competitors in Formula 1,” said Wolff. “And I don’t want to reduce that topic to this level.

“It is a much wider issue that deserves more space and I don’t want to harm the topic by making it an intra-team battle, because it is not.

“It’s the FIA or the legals that have to look at that, it’s outside of the team’s control.” recommends

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Asked how “damaging” he feels this situation has been for the sport, Wolff returned to the belief that questioning its handling will only make it look “like the Mercedes or the McLaren guy talks about the Red Bull guys”.

Instead, he says this is up to the FIA and F1 to determine if any further steps are taken.

“Like I said before, I think the moment I start to and continue to question how this has been handled, I’m not doing any good to the whole issue,” Wolff stressed. “Because then it could be seen as this is just about a power fight within F1.

“That’s why I think it’s not in the team’s hands. It’s a so much bigger topic. I don’t want to diminish the whole situation by making it seem like the Mercedes or the McLaren guy talks about the Red Bull guys.

“I think let’s see where it goes in the next days and I very much hope that the governing body, the sanctioning body, commercial rights holder, sets the compass right.”

Horner’s Red Bull team won the opening race of F1 2024 in Bahrain in dominant fashion, Max Verstappen claiming victory and the fastest lap bonus point with Sergio Perez claiming P2, meaning maximum points scored for the team.

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