Valtteri Bottas subject of crude Christian Horner horse riding joke

Jamie Woodhouse
Christian Horner and Valtteri Bottas side-by-side.

Christian Horner, left and Valtteri Bottas, right, side-by-side.

Red Bull principal Christian Horner revisited a scene previously aired by Netflix where he had told his wife “you cannot say I’m riding Bottas!”

Netflix’s Formula 1 docuseries ‘Drive to Survive’ has been credited for sparking the major popularity boom which Formula 1 is currently enjoying, with the United States a particularly successful market in that regard.

The calendar expanded to three rounds in the nation for F1 2023, with Horner having said the anticipation for the debut of the Las Vegas Grand Prix probably dwarfs that of any past new grands prix he has experienced.

When Christian Horner ‘rode Valtteri Bottas’

Drive to Survive gives viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the world of Formula 1, and while speaking to ESPN, Horner clarified a misconception stemming from there when asked about “the horse Bottas or Valtteri”.

Horner and his wife Geri Halliwell, a member of the iconic ‘Spice Girls’ pop group, as the Netflix cameras have shown are very keen on their horse riding and racing, which in a Drive to Survive episode saw Horner respond to his wife with a crude joke when she suggested his horse had the personality of ex-Mercedes and now Alfa Romeo driver Valtteri Bottas.

“Okay, that’s Netflix’s fault,” said Horner in response to the confusion.

“My wife made reference…we’re talking about the personalities of the horses that we were riding, and she said ‘your horse is a little bit of a Valtteri’.

“And I said ‘darling, you cannot say I’m riding Bottas!'”

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Horner gave up his racing career at a young age and would go on to be named Red Bull Racing team principal when they joined the F1 grid back in 2005.

It is safe to say his appointment paid off, with the team since then winning six Drivers’ and five Constructors’ titles, with a further point set to be added to each tally in F1 2023 as Red Bull obliterate the competition, still undefeated after 12 rounds.

But, if Horner was not the team principal of Red Bull, then he suspects his job would be something related to horses.

“If I wasn’t a team principal, I’d probably be unemployable!” Horner joked.

“I love horses, so it would be something to do with horses. I wouldn’t be a jockey, that’s for sure.”

Red Bull’s runaway Championship leader Max Verstappen is 125 points clear of team-mate Sergio Perez at the top of the Drivers’ standings, while Red Bull are 256 points clear of nearest rival Mercedes in the Constructors’.

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