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Horner Case Complainant Distressed by Red Bull's Diversions

Horner Case: Complainant Distressed by Red Bull’s Diversions

02/04/2024

The Horner affair’s complainant feels disturbed, frightened, and intimidated, weary from Red Bull’s misleading tactics.

Amid the fallout of exposing misconduct, Christian Horner’s former assistant confronts a challenging silence, shedding light on a deeper issue within Red Bull.

Christian Horner’s former personal assistant, who brought the tumultuous Horner affair to light by exposing her boss’s inappropriate behavior, now finds herself in a very challenging personal situation.

A close family acquaintance of Horner’s former assistant revealed that she is angry, scared, and sad, as the affair has yielded no tangible benefits for her.

The independent investigation was concluded without any action, but a settlement was reportedly reached for an amount between 750,000 and one million pounds, intended as compensation for the alleged harm, which remains officially unproven. Red Bull has confirmed the existence of a confidentiality clause.

Such a settlement suggests possible fault on the Horner side. Since the settlement, the assistant has been removed from the team, while Horner is poised to take sole control at Red Bull, likely exacerbating the victim’s sense of injustice.

“It’s impossible for people to understand what it’s like for her,” said the acquaintance to the BBC. “She can’t and doesn’t want to speak. But I can tell you how it affects her. She breaks down in tears whenever I ask her anything.”

“She says she has no one to talk to because she’s not allowed to speak. She’s very upset, angry, frightened, intimidated, and alone. And I think it’s impossible for people to understand what she’s going through without being in her shoes.”

Authentic WhatsApp Messages

Many theories have emerged on social media to defend Christian Horner, ranging from the assistant’s alleged desire to capitalize on his fame to claims that the WhatsApp messages found in a Google Drive, which sparked the scandal, were fabricated.

The victim’s close acquaintance confirms that the messages were authentic and regrets Horner and Red Bull’s lack of clear communication about them: “We can all read the WhatsApp messages and form our own opinions on whether the relationship between a CEO and an assistant was appropriate.”

“As Christian has said, he wants to move on from this affair. If the procedure was fair and independent and found no wrongdoing, why not do so transparently, and why doesn’t Christian deny the existence of these WhatsApp messages?”

She also emphasizes that the hierarchical relationship makes it more than just a relationship between two individuals: “It seems some people think it takes two to tango, but that’s unfair. It’s a red herring. The question is whether Christian should have done what he did as CEO.”

“She struggles to understand” the conclusions

Isolated at Red Bull after working hard to rise through the ranks and serve as Christian Horner’s right-hand on a daily basis, the complainant’s case was unsuccessful, and she now sees her alleged harasser on the verge of becoming the head of the Red Bull group.

“She struggles to understand how, given the information, an independent process could lead to the conclusions it did and the actions that followed.”

“It’s shocking, though not surprising, to see how upset she is. There were numerous financial offers, but she was interested in none. She can’t talk to her friends, only allowed to speak with her immediate family members.”

“Here is a single woman who followed the proper procedure and feels unheard, facing an entirely unjust process. It takes a very brave woman to do what she did. And sadly, it’s a very poor situation.”

“She was threatened with legal jargon”

The victim agreed to a settlement because Red Bull pressured her, and a close acquaintance also confirms that the team threatened her throughout the affair to yield and accept terms favoring Horner.

This method, akin to gagging procedures, is often employed by large corporations whose legal departments are usually very powerful. The result is often fear or resignation in the victim, who might then accept a compromise rather than fighting to the end.

“One can register with an employment tribunal, which is public. As an acquaintance, I can tell you that I assume Horner, as he has at every stage, will do everything he can to ensure the employment tribunal is not public.”

“Unfortunately, the date is still far off. She was threatened with legal jargon at every step, just like the media. She has now been suspended and it’s clear that Red Bull is following a process aiming to fire her.”

Red Bull assured that this was not the case, even though the suspension is confirmed: “Christian did not try [to handle this privately]. And she was not suspended with the intention to fire her.”

“Christian is in a position of strength”

By playing for time and allowing doubts to linger, Red Bull and Horner manage to gradually erase this story from memory, adding further ambiguity to the facts. The question is when the appeal will happen, and when the facts can be verified: “She is determined to let the truth come out.”

“She just wants to work in sports and is very concerned about her reputation and her ability to be hired by anyone. She has spent her whole life in motorsports. On one hand, she is very worried and fearful for her future, on the other, she is very determined to let the truth be known.”

“Because she can’t openly talk to her friends, I think she has suppressed all this fear and concern and can’t openly communicate with her friends and family for support and advice, as she respects the terms and conditions imposed on her.”

“It’s clear she hasn’t been able to say a word or even identify herself, while Christian is in a position to provide ample comments because he is in a position of power and influence to present his side of the story, and she has been completely silenced.”

Horner Case: Complainant Distressed by Red Bull’s Diversions. Horner Case: Complainant Distressed by Red Bull’s Diversions. F1 2024 Horner Case: Complainant Distressed by Red Bull’s Diversions

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