Geri Halliwell in Bahrain as Christian Horner meets with F1 chiefs for showdown talks

Christian Horner met with Mohammed ben Sulayem, FIA President, on Friday (Photo: Getty)

Christian Horner has attended a meeting between the heads of Formula 1 and the FIA after messages supposedly related to his alleged ‘inappropriate behaviour’ were leaked.

At the same time, it has been reported that his wife, former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell, has arrived in Bahrain where the first race of the F1 season is taking place this weekend.

Horner was under investigation for several weeks after a female employee of Red Bull Racing accused the team principal of ‘inappropriate and controlling behaviour’.

Horner has always denied the claims and on Wednesday, Red Bull announced that the investigation was over and that the ‘grievance have been dismissed’.

But just 24 hours later, apparent WhatsApp messages and images between Horner and the complainant were leaked to the media and F1 personnel.

This included F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali and FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem.

Metro have seen the leaked materials but cannot comment on what is in them.



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 to Saturday 2 March – Formula 1 season gets underway with the Bahrain Grand Prix

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

It was reported on Friday morning that Domenicali and Sulayem were to meet in the Bahrain paddock to discuss the matter and later, during third practice, Horner was summoned to said talks.

He left the pitwall but returned before the session was over and was seen speaking to and shaking hands with Sulayem just outside the Red Bull garage.

At the same time, the Mail have reported that Halliwell has arrived in Bahrain having planned to attend the grand prix as she has done many times over the years.

F1 Grand Prix of Monaco

Geri Halliwell has attended many F1 races of the years, supporting her husband’s Red Bull team (Photo: Getty)



Christian Horner investigation – what we know

It is said she flew out before the leak occurred and it is not known whether she will now be in the paddock after all.

After Horner was cleared by Red Bull, Halliwell was said to be ‘relieved and elated’, but following this latest development has been left ‘humiliated’.

Following the leak, Horner released a statement saying he would ‘not comment on anonymous speculation’, while a spokesperson for Red Bull said: ‘This is a private matter between Mr Horner and another and it would be inappropriate for Red Bull to comment on this.’

Red Bull chief Helmut Marko added, as quoted by Bild: ‘I’m flabbergasted and surprised that the documents were leaked. I’ve never seen them myself.’

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