Christian Horner accuses Mercedes and Ferrari of ‘hugely defamatory’ claims amid budget leak rumours

Christian Horner ACCUSES Mercedes and Ferrari of using “fictitious” and “hugely defamatory” claims to derail Max Verstappen’s World Cup shot… after Red Bull surpassed the £114million spending limit

  • Christian Horner has responded to claims his side breached the FIA ​​cap
  • All teams in the paddock must meet the £114m budget ceiling
  • However, a leaked report implied two sides were failing to comply
  • The two teams allegedly at fault are Aston Martin and Horner’s Red Bull team
  • Counselor Helmut Marko claimed the report had damaged her reputation
  • Toto Wolff suggested that Horner speak to his financial advisor more often

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner struggled in Singapore, accusing Mercedes of making “sneaky” and “fictional” claims aimed at distracting from Max Verstappen’s quest for a second title.

Mercedes has accused its rivals of breaching budget caps last year, an offense which if proven could have implications for 2021 World Championship results, 10 months after Verstappen dramatically guided Lewis Hamilton to the crown in Abu Dhabi.

But in a fierce defense, Horner hit back, defending his team’s spending as legal and accusing a BBC reporter of lack of impartiality.

Christian Horner has accused rivals Mercedes and Ferrari of trying to derail Max Verstappen's bid to seal the World Championship in Singapore

Christian Horner has accused rivals Mercedes and Ferrari of trying to derail Max Verstappen’s bid to seal the World Championship in Singapore

Ahead of Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix, where Verstappen could complete his serenely successful title defense if the results go his way, Horner said: “We were a little surprised by the comments from our two rival teams (Mercedes and Ferrari). Submissions between the team and the FIA ​​are confidential and I have no idea what the outcome of our rivals’ submissions is, so I would be curious as to where their source of information for these fictional claims came from.

“You are extremely defamatory. One can only surmise that it is no coincidence that this comes at a time when Max has his first goal of the World Cup. How on earth do they have this information and knowledge?

“The FIA ​​​​has stated that they have not yet completed their process. So unless there is a clear retraction of these statements, we will take them incredibly seriously and examine the options available to us, as it is absolutely unacceptable to make the comments made yesterday, which the team, the brands and Formula 1 absolutely slander.

Horner's side are accused of exceeding the FIA's £114million spending ceiling in a leaked report

Horner’s side are accused of exceeding the FIA’s £114million spending ceiling in a leaked report

Helmut Marko (middle) previously indicated that the allegations would damage her reputation

Helmut Marko (middle) previously indicated that the allegations would damage her reputation

“To reiterate, what is totally unacceptable is for teams not involved in any form of submission to make claims about our submission and anticipated penalties that are just not right.”

The FIA ​​will decide on Wednesday whether Red Bull broke the £114million spending limit on Wednesday when they complete the audit process that all teams are subject to, as part of a process that has been delayed from the original completion date in June.

“We filed the submission in March and we stand behind the submission 100 percent that we are under the cap,” Horner said. “That has to be signed off by your auditors and goes through a process with the FIA.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has attacked his rival and suggested he speak to his financial adviser

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has attacked his rival and suggested he speak to his financial adviser

“There are questions and interpretations that are being raised and debated, and that process is ongoing. We eagerly await the final result but remain absolutely confident that we have met the cap.’

Horner was

Horner was “stunned” by suggestions from Mattia Binotto’s Ferrari.

A BBC reporter asked why Horner was making the counter-accusations, despite his rivals not naming Red Bull.

Horner countered: “They named Red Bull very clearly, so if you’re referring to allegations that I’m making, the allegations were indeed theirs.

“I know you have a preference for certain teams, but it should remain absolutely neutral.

“The facts are that the filing is with the FIA ​​and it is a private filing. How on earth can any team know the details of our submission and if we’re violating them?

“We don’t know if we’ve committed a breach and we won’t know until next week when the trial is complete. So maybe people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones when these allegations are made.

Marko reiterated Horner's claims that Red Bull were not innocent of any perceived wrongdoing

Marko reiterated Horner’s claims that Red Bull were not innocent of any perceived wrongdoing

“Is it a coincidence that Max has his first shot at winning the title and we’re not talking about cost caps here, but the phenomenal performance he’s had this year? this year, and when last year is referred to, this year, next year, we will take it very seriously. This is an issue that the FIA ​​needs to address, one that Red Bull needs to address, which is our position.’

Addressing how Red Bull has tried to stay within the cap, which was first introduced in Formula 1 just last year, Horner added: “I hear other teams are saying up to 40 staff have been laid off. We laid off over 90 employees.

“We live and breathe the cost cap every day and in every decision we make. It is an enormous challenge and the compromises we have made through staffing and salary freezes are extensive. The way you race is very different. It’s extremely complex and a lot of effort to manage and it’s now embedded in all aspects of the team.’

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https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/sportsnews/article-11269519/Christian-Horner-ACCUSES-Mercedes-Ferrari-hugely-defamatory-claims-amid-budget-leak-rumours.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Christian Horner accuses Mercedes and Ferrari of ‘hugely defamatory’ claims amid budget leak rumours

Maureen Mackey

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