Red Bull F1 employee who accused team boss Horner of misconduct has been suspended, AP source says

The Red Bull Racing Formula 1 employee whose complaint sparked an investigation into alleged misconduct by team principal Christian Horner has been suspended, a person with information on the matter told The Associated Press on Thursday.

The person requested anonymity because Red Bull hasn't revealed details of the investigation.

Red Bull Racing's parent company didn’t immediately answer a request seeking comment.

Last week, the team’s parent company dismissed a complaint of alleged misconduct by Horner toward a team employee. At the time, the company said the employee had a right of appeal.

Horner declined to comment on the suspension Thursday when he spoke at a news conference in Jeddah ahead of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix this weekend.

“I’m afraid that I can’t comment on anything that’s confidential between an employee and the company, so I can’t offer you anything on that," he said.

A day after the complaint was dismissed, a file alleged to contain evidence against Horner was emailed to nearly 200 people in the F1 paddock, including Liberty Media, F1, the FIA, the other nine team principals and multiple media outlets. That occurred during practice for the Bahrain Grand Prix.

The authenticity of the files has not been verified by the AP; the file came from a generic email account.

Also Thursday, Horner expressed confidence that champion driver Max Verstappen would not leave Red Bull. That followed criticism of Horner from Verstappen's father, Jos, who warned last week the team would “explode” if Horner stayed in his post, in comments to The Daily Mail. Verstappen said Wednesday that his father was “not a liar,” but the Dutch driver also indicated he had “no reason to leave” the team where he has won his three titles.

Asked if Verstappen would see out his Red Bull contract, Horner said: “I’m certain that he will. He’s got a great team around him, he’s got great faith in that team and we’ve achieved an awful lot together, so he’s committed to an agreement till 2028. We know from the team’s side, from Max’s side that we’re determined to build on the success that we’ve achieved already.”

Horner added that “discussions” were held following Verstappen's victory at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix last week, but he didn't give details.

“I spoke to Jos following the Grand Prix and obviously congratulated him on his son’s performance, and I think it’s in everybody’s interests collectively that we’ve agreed to move on, to focus on the future,” Horner said.

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