Christian Horner’s ‘rogue marshal’ outburst ‘not accepted’, FIA confirms

The Red Bull team boss has apologised after his outburst following an incident that led to Max Verstappen’s grid penalty

Jack Rathborn
Monday 22 November 2021 12:08
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<p>Christian Horner was summoned to the stewards after a pre-race television interview (Tim Goode/PA)</p>

Christian Horner was summoned to the stewards after a pre-race television interview (Tim Goode/PA)

Christian Horner’s outburst at a “rogue marshal” is simply “not accepted”, the FIA has confirmed.

The Red Bull team boss was seen criticising volunteers working for Formula 1 at the Qatar Grand Prix.

And Horner was incensed after a yellow flag was waved, leading to Max Verstappen’s grid penalty.

Horner has since apologised and blamed the nature of his comments due to being “under the pressure of competition”.

FIA race director Michael Masi insists that is no excuse: “I think you should not attack any person.

“Especially when we have thousands of volunteer marshals around the world, that give up a huge amount of time globally.

“Without them this sport that everyone has very close to their heart, and all of them give up a huge amount of their time, won’t happen.

“I will defend every volunteer official and every official at every racetrack around the world, and stress that this is not accepted.”

Masi then elaborated on the reasons behind the yellow flags in the incident which involved AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly: “What the locals did, they reacted to the situation before them. And that’s plain and simple.

“If you have a look at what was there and what was happening and with everything with Pierre’s car, they acted upon instinct for what was before them.

“It was a safety activity, they acted in the best interest of keeping everyone safe on track, and I don’t think anyone should be criticised for acting upon their instincts.”

And Masi then referred Horner to the stewards over his comments, adding that he will undertake a two-day stewards seminar next year.

“Yes I did, it was a race director referral to the stewards,” he added. “I was advised of them, and referred Christian, and Christian was very apologetic for his comments.

“Obviously the steward’s decision was very straightforward, he didn’t mean to offend anyone, the person in question who was actually waving the flag has been apologised to personally, and Christian to his credit has volunteered to come and be a part of the stewards’ seminar in 2022.

“It’s a two-day stewards seminar, so there’s lots that’s discussed over those two days. There’ll be lots of topics and we might give him a topic to present.”

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