Tuesday, November 29, 2022
HomeSportChristian Horner raged at Lewis Hamilton and Toto Wolff's criticism: 'Laughable'

Christian Horner raged at Lewis Hamilton and Toto Wolff's criticism: 'Laughable'

Netflix’s series – Drive to Survive – returns today as the world of F1 prepares for yet another season of drama. Throughout the 2021 season, Red Bull and Mercedes’ close competition on track was accompanied by a war of words off it. Team bosses Christian Horner and Toto Wolff regularly clashed, whether it was about car design, race regulations or the exploits of Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. In the build-up to the season finale in Abu Dhabi, Horner accused his Mercedes rivals of trying to tarnish Verstappen’s reputation.

Prior to this, Verstappen and Hamilton had clashed in Saudi Arabia, with the Briton branding his Dutch rival “dangerous”.

On the comments, Horner said in December: “Of course it’s been a concerted campaign by Mercedes.

“It’s been part of a narrative to put as much pressure on the stewards to act differently from any other race.

“This is a campaign that’s been driven covertly to put the spotlight on Max, give him a tag-line, portray him as this mad, irresponsible driver, put as much pressure as you can on him, on the team, and ultimately on the governing body.

“We saw in Brazil, the comments about the penalties being laughable, or Lewis being persecuted. Mercedes have got one of the smartest media arms in the paddock and they use every tool they can.”

Verstappen and Hamilton had numerous incidents on track last season.

At Imola, the second race of the season, Verstappen forced Hamilton onto the curb at the first chicane on lap one, propelling himself into the lead.

At Monza, Verstappen and Hamilton went into turns one and two side by side. The Red Bull car bounced off the curb and into the air before landing on Hamilton’s Mercedes in a terrifying incident.

Following the crash, Verstappen got out of his car and walked straight off track, muttering: “That’s what happens when you don’t leave enough space.”

Hamilton said after the race: “I feel very, very fortunate today. Thank God for the halo.

“That ultimately saved me. And saved my neck. I don’t think I have ever been hit on the head by a car before and it is quite a shock for me.

“If you see the image, my head is quite far forward.

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Horner was eventually tracked down by Sky Sports F1 where he said he been “surprised” by the story.

The Red Bull boss said: “I was slightly surprised to be reading comments I’m supposed to have been making, but there we go,” Horner told Sky F1.

“I haven’t paid a great deal of attention to [the Mercedes]. It’s obviously a fairly different concept, but that’s for the designer guys and aerodynamicists to get into.”

“Let the guys digest it and understand it.”



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