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Horner Fires Back at Wolff Over Verstappen Remarks

Horner Fires Back at Wolff Over Verstappen Remarks

21/04/2024

In a heated response to Toto Wolff, Christian Horner defends Max Verstappen, emphasizing loyalty and future prospects at Red Bull Racing.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner couldn’t remain silent in response to Toto Wolff’s remarks following the Chinese Grand Prix, which included comments about Max Verstappen and his values that could distance him from Red Bull Racing.

Wolff stated that he believed there were several factors why a driver decides to race for a team and that sheer performance doesn’t count for a driver who has “depth of thought” (a must-read here), after placing the triple driver’s champion at the top of his wish list in recent weeks.

“I need to think carefully about what I say here,” Horner began when informed of Wolff’s latest comments.

“Have you spoken to Max? Because if you talk to Max – and ultimately, it’s not about pieces of paper, we know he has a contract until the end of 2028 – it’s about how he feels about the future, about the team, and the relationship he has within the team and how he acts.”

“I don’t think Toto’s problems come from his drivers; I think he probably has other issues to focus on rather than focusing on drivers who aren’t available.”

Asked if he would welcome his star driver putting an end to speculation about his future, Horner replied: “I don’t know how many times he needs to say it again. He has said it repeatedly. I won’t be dragged into this – I think sometimes it’s just designed to make noise.”

Not missing an opportunity to hit back at Mercedes and Wolff, Horner highlighted the success Red Bull has enjoyed since the latest regulations were introduced in early 2022.

“We’ve now surpassed the number of races that Mercedes won in the modern era, so Red Bull is in good shape, why on earth would you want to leave this team?”

“Mercedes is currently the third team behind its customers, so I think Wolff’s time would be better spent focusing on the team rather than the driver market.”

And regarding Mercedes F1’s promising future with the 2026 regulations, Horner had an additional dig in response.

“Has any of you heard that George Russell’s contract ends at the end of 2025? You know, maybe he might not be so keen to stay in 2026 – you know, the market changes.”

Pressed to return the conversation to Verstappen’s future, highlighting the fact that Verstappen has not yet unequivocally stated he will be 100% with Red Bull next season, Horner responded: “I can assure you there’s no ambiguity about where Max Verstappen will be next year.”

Horner Fires Back at Wolff Over Verstappen Remarks

Horner Fires Back at Wolff Over Verstappen Remarks. Horner Fires Back at Wolff Over Verstappen Remarks

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