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Red Bull F1 boss Horner given BIG Sky Sports TV grilling - IN FULL

Red Bull F1 boss Horner given BIG Sky Sports TV grilling - IN FULL

Red Bull F1 boss Horner given BIG Sky Sports TV grilling - IN FULL

Red Bull F1 boss Horner given BIG Sky Sports TV grilling - IN FULL

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner was grilled by Sky Sports F1 presenter Simon Lazenby after the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, with speculation continuing around the futures of several team members.

Horner's team are suffering a somewhat turbulent spell off the track, with the media furore around the likes of Helmut Marko, Max Verstappen and Adrian Newey rife in Jeddah.

READ MORE: Verstappen reveals fears on shock Marko Red Bull exit

On top of this, Horner's own future has been called into doubt following accusations of alleged 'inappropriate behaviour', allegations that have been dismissed by an internal investigation.

Despite all of the speculation, Verstappen has managed to claim the opening two grand prix victories, putting the world champions in a very strong position once again.

Rumours of infighting at Red Bull have been rife
Could Max Verstappen be off to Mercedes?

Sky Sports grill Horner on Red Bull infighting

Lazenby – “Yeah, hats off again to the design team. But that was a relatively easy one, wasn't it today?”

Horner – “It was a very well executed race. I mean, the cars performed, you know, brilliantly all weekend, the drivers have done their part. You know, the only mishap we had was the unsafe release, but Checo had enough in hand to keep that P2. So a one-two finish, you know, the best way, the best possible start for the season for us.”

Lazenby – “What's the most satisfying thing about the way that your drivers and the car is performing at the moment?”

Horner – “I think that you can see that the team is operating at an incredibly high level and we've carried that momentum from last year. The car is an aggressive evolution. And it was interesting to see, okay, in Bahrain, how do we go we've come to another circuit and it's performed well again here. So Melbourne will be another very different challenge. But again, Max, you know, clinical and his execution of that race and, and Checo put in a very strong race performance as well.”

Lazenby – “Yeah, a word on Checo because we've talked at nauseam, haven't we about the world champion, the triple world champion, we know exactly what you're gonna get from him but for Checo, okay, was, what was it second in the first in the first couple of races of last year, but he's doing exactly what he needs to do is your number two driver?”

Horner – “No, look, absolutely. He's doing a strong job he started the season well, it's just a matter of carrying out the momentum, he'll take confidence out of that, you know, he was, you know, within what, 10 seconds of his teammate before the penalty and had to make the pass on Charles so, so strong race for him it's a track that he's always gone well, but he'll take that confidence from here to Melbourne.”

Lazenby – “And they seem reliable. The car seems reliable and a couple of gearbox, any issues with it?”

Horner – “Nothing major, nothing that affects the allocation or anything like that, we've not lost anything. No, the cars ran faultlessly in the race and, again, testimony to the hard work from all the men and women back in Milton Keynes.”

Lazenby – “Christian, I've got to ask you, is there a battle going on? For who controls the race team at the moment? Within Red Bull ownership level?"

Horner – “Look, no. You know, obviously a lot is made of, of this stuff. But you know, we are, we are one team, and nobody is bigger than a team. This team comprises across the different entities of over 1400 people. And everybody has a role to play, and that's from the very bottom to the very top, and without them performing, you don't achieve performances like this.

"Yeah, unfortunately, there's been obviously a lot of speculation this weekend. But once again, our focus is very much on track."

READ MORE: Marko makes 'interesting' claim on Newey and Verstappen exit rumours

Christian Horner has been under fire of late

Lazenby – “Well, I mean, that's what you said in Bahrain. But obviously, with everything that has happened this weekend, we heard as we were going off air last night, Dr. Marko, saying he might be suspended, then of course, he's not suspended. He got the backing of Oliver Mintzlaff. He also got the backing of Max Verstappen, who said effectively, if he goes I go, that, can you understand that from the outside that might appear that the team is unified off the track?"

Horner - Well, firstly, Helmut. He is a consultant to Red Bull GmbH. So whatever the discussion was, was between them and not, with not the team. You know, Max, Max is an important member of our team. He's a valued member of our team. He's a wonderful driver. But everybody has a role to play in this team.

"We are a team and no single individual is bigger than the team. And that's the only way that you achieved these kinds of results. Now, today was Max's 100th podium finish, all of which had been in Red Bull racing cars, it was his 56th race victory. We move ahead of Williams on 114 victories in what’s only our 20th year and you know, this is an incredibly strong team that has strength and depth that is achieving these kinds of results.”

Lazenby – “Have you got Max's backing? Because his father continues to say that it would be bad for you to stay.”

Horner - “Well, look, obviously, there's rumblings I'm aware of, you know, what's been said, but Max is an important part of this team. He's our driver and he's doing a great job. And as team, principal and CEO, I'm responsible for the running and the operation of this, of this team. So everybody has to do their part, Max is doing his part. Everybody else is doing their part.”

Lazenby – “But obviously, there's something to fix between yourself and Jos. If you can do that. You'll continue together and smooth it over and continue racing as you are?”

Horner – “I think that you know, speculation is always is obviously rife, but the most important thing is the team and focusing on on-track performances. And we all have a vested interest in achieving performances like we have today. And you know, it's been a phenomenal team effort, and what you don't see, you only see the front end.

Jos Verstappen and Christian Horner's relationship has deteriorated

"It's all the men and women behind the scenes, all the people in the supply chain, all the people in the support functions, all the people that work ridiculously long hours as one of the biggest team sports, if not the biggest team sport in the world. And I think it's important to recognise that to achieve, there's nine other teams trying to do what we're doing, and it's not that easy. You only do that by having a spirit, a culture and a determination throughout the entire company, and of course, the drivers are driving the end product and they've done a wonderful job today. But we move on, and our focus is very much on Melbourne.”

Lazenby – “So no issues with the culture within the team then, you talked about that saying that there's a decent culture within the team?”

Horner – “Yes, absolutely. I mean, I think that, you know, Red Bull racing is the most followed sporting entity of any sports team in the world. And, you know, we've got an incredible team, an incredible group of men and women that are doing an amazing job and, you know, without which we wouldn't be achieving these performances.”

Lazenby – “Thank you for talking to us, Christian. Thank you very much.”

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: F1 champion insists Red Bull NOT responsible for 2023 success

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