Christian Horner’s accuser ‘set to appeal’ outcome of Red Bull investigation

Christian Horner was joined by his wife Geri Halliwell at the Saudi Arabia GP (Photo: Getty)

The woman who accused Christian Horner of ‘inappropriate behaviour’ will appeal the outcome of the investigation into the Red Bull boss, according to reports.

Horner, husband of former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell, was cleared of any wrongdoing after a month-long, independent investigation into allegations made against him by a female employee of Red Bull.

On the eve of the 2024 Formula 1 season, Red Bull released the following statement: ‘The independent investigation into the allegations made against Mr Horner is complete, and Red Bull can confirm that the grievance has been dismissed.

‘The complainant has a right of appeal. Red Bull is confident that the investigation has been fair, rigorous and impartial.’

The deadline for the complainant to appeal is believed to be some time this week, with The Sun now claiming that she will indeed do so having very recently changed lawyers.

It comes after the accuser was suspended on full pay by Red Bull ahead of last weekend’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

It is said that Red Bull did so because she was ‘dishonest’.

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If true, this latest development will only add more fuel to the fire to the scandal that is completely overshadowing F1.

Just 24 hours after Red Bull cleared Horner, texts and images related to the probe were leaked, and while the 50-year-old has repeatedly denied the allegations, his job is very much on the line.

Jos Verstappen, father of three-time F1 champion Max, has called for Horner to be sacked, leading to speculation that Max could sensationally quit Red Bull if the team principal remained.

Christian Horner investigation timeline

How the scandal has unfolded…

Monday 5 February – Red Bull confirm investigation into Horner over ‘controlling behaviour’ allegations

Friday 9 February – Horner grilled by independent lawyer during eight-hour hearing

Thursday 15 February – Horner attends Red Bull’s 2024 car launch and publicly addresses allegations for first time – says he ‘fully denies’ any wrongdoing

Friday 16 February – Fresh allegations emerge in Dutch Newspaper De Telegraaf suggesting Horner sent messages of a ‘suggestive nature’ to a female employee

Wednesday 21 February to Friday 23 February – Horner attends Formula 1 pre-season testing in Bahrain – says: ‘We hope there is a resolution as soon as possible’

Friday 23 February – Sixth series of F1: Drive to Survive releases on Netflix – Horner and wife Geri Halliwell feature in docuseries

Wednesday 28 February – Horner cleared of allegations – Red Bull say: ‘The investigation is complete and the grievance has been dismissed. The complainant has a right of appeal’

Thursday 29 February – WhatsApp messages and images supposedly between Horner and the complainant were leaked to the media and F1 personnel

Friday 1 March – Horner summoned for showdown talks with F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali and FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem – later, Horner has a ‘blazing row’ with Jos Verstappen

Saturday 2 March – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen wins season opening Bahrain Grand Prix – hours later, Jos, Max’s father, warns Red Bull ‘is in danger of being torn apart’ unless Horner leaves

Wednesday 6 March – Deadline for complainant to appeal outcome of investigation

Thursday 7 March to Saturday 9 March – Saudi Arabian Grand Prix – Max says in build-up that his father is ‘not a liar’

Thursday 7 March – Horner’s accuser is suspended on full pay by Red Bull

Red Bull’s owners and hierarchy held crisis talks on Sunday, but the F1 champions have refuted reports that Horner will be sacked ahead of the next race in Australia on 24th March.

‘As Christian has said, he is grateful for the full support of the shareholders and that remains the case,’ a spokesperson for the team said.

Horner has continually thanked his family and team for their support and stated that he has the backing of Red Bull’s owners.

Christian Horner investigation – what we know

Speaking after the season opening Bahrain Grand Prix, he said: ‘Yes absolutely [Red Bull are united]. We are a very strong team.

‘We have got tremendous support, tremendous partners and great shareholders behind us as well. You don’t achieve this kind of result by not being united.’

‘My focus is on this team, my family, my wife and going racing. I have the support of an incredible family, of an incredible wife, of an incredible team and everybody within that team and my focus is on going racing and winning races and doing the best that I can.

‘Obviously it’s not been pleasant. The unwanted attention, but the focus is now very much on the cars.’

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