According to the German website “Motorsport-Total.com,” Red Bull GmbH admitted in an official statement
“The most recent accusations are the subject of an independent investigation that has begun. The investigation is being handled by an impartial outside investigating counsel and would be finished as soon as feasible.”
A number of media outlets, such as the Dutch “De Telegraaf” and the website “F1-Insider.com,” have discussed “unnecessary behavior towards an employee of the racing team.” The accusation originated from a female employee who claimed to have received intimate photographs on her cell phone, according to the German daily Bild and the British publication The Times.
The accusations of allegedly inappropriate behavior were made for the first time at the end of last week, according to the website Motorsport-Total.com. The details are starting to come to light, but the British manager, who won seven F1 world titles with teammates Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen is still presumed innocent. He is also the boss of Adrian Newey, one of the championship’s greatest technical assets.
According to reports, Red Bull’s headquarters located in Fuschl, Austria, is now working on a file containing “establishing material that brings together the accusations”. The information states that Christian Horner, who is married to Geri Halliwell, a former Spice Girl, has a legitimate presumption of innocence, but that Horner’s actions are currently being looked into internally at Red Bull and that further actions and possible implications will be dealt with at the highest management level.
Horner is advised to depart
Yet, some insiders from the paddock have already reported that he has received a friendly recommendation from Red Bull to voluntarily resign from his role as team captain and to not continue in that capacity. It’s possible, though, that Horner first disapproved of the idea.
At the FOM offices in London on Monday, Christian Horner attended a scheduled meeting of the Formula 1 Commission in his role as Red Bull team manager. He is only able to respond, “I absolutely reject these allegations,” to the “De Telegraaf” on the subject.
Marko says nothing.
No more information has been released as of yet, except than the formal announcement. Even Red Bull Racing executive adviser Helmut Marko declined to comment when questioned by ‘Motorsport-Total.com,’ telling the German media that he would not comment on the matter.
More information on this very complex subject is anticipated in the next several hours.
An internal battle for dominance?
Horner’s defense attorneys claim that he is the victim of a power struggle that is taking place inside the Red Bull company. Horner could rely on the unwavering backing of the Austrian when firm founder Dietrich Mateschitz was alive, but that may have altered these days.
According to Horner’s supporters, the accusations are slanderous attempts to remove him from his position of authority at the Salzburg headquarters, as reported by the “Daily Mail.” The energy drink manufacturer’s headquarters are located in this city in Austria.
The Dutch daily “De Telegraaf” was allegedly threatened with legal action by the British media if it disclosed the accusations made against Horner. ‘F1-Insider’ ultimately broke the story first, with the previously stated Dutch magazine following shortly after.
There have already been discussions regarding potential Horner successors in various media venues. Pierre Wache and Jonathan Wheatley had the best placement. The former, being the technical director, could concentrate on his domain, whilst the latter, as the sporting director, is more important.