Christian Horner ahead of the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on November 26, 2023.
(Photo by Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Red Bull Clears Christian Horner After Investigation

After weeks of deliberations, investigations and rumors, Red Bull Racing has announced that a complaint against Christian Horner has been dismissed, officially clearing him to continue in his role as principal of the Formula 1 team.

"The independent investigation into the allegations made against Mr. Horner is complete, and Red Bull can confirm that the grievance has been dismissed," a Red Bull spokesperson said in a statement. "The complainant has a right of appeal. Red Bull is confident that the investigation has been fair, rigorous, and impartial. The investigation report is confidential and contains the private information of the parties and third parties who assisted in the investigation, and therefore we will not be commenting further out of respect for all concerned. Red Bull will continue striving to meet the highest workplace standards."

The independent investigation was announced in early February and lasted almost a month as Red Bull looked into the allegations by a female member of the staff accusing Horner of "inappropriate controlling behavior." Throughout the month, Horner's future hung in the balance, with rumors popping up last week saying that the allegations were sexual in nature, accusing him of sending inappropriate text messages.

This news comes at a pivotal time as Horner and his team make final preparations for the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 2. Horner had denied the allegations all along and proceeded with business as usual, appearing at the Red Bull car launch on Feb. 15 and at the Bahrain track for preseason testing last week.

Throughout the investigation, Horner said he had the support of drivers Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez. Meanwhile, Ford Motor Co., which will partner with Red Bull in 2026 to form Red Bull-Ford Powertrains, criticized their future partner over a "lack of transparency" and not finding a quick resolution.

Ford CEO Jim Farley said on Feb. 23 that Ford was "increasingly frustrated by the lack of resolution or clear indication from you about when you anticipate a fair and just resolution of this matter."

Horner has yet to comment on being cleared. But he said on Feb. 15, "I am absolutely committed to this team, I have been here since the beginning, I have built this team. There have been highs and lows along the way, 113 race wins, we have won seven drivers' world championships, six constructors' world championships in 19 seasons. That's in the history books now but it's what lies ahead that's important. My focus is on the future."

The first race of the 2024 F1 season — featuring a record 24 races — is on Saturday, March 2, in Bahrain, with Red Bull and Verstappen favored to get the victory.

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