Red Bull could be left waiting until after their car launch event on 15 February to find out the fate of team principal Christian Horner. The 50-year-old was placed under investigation on Monday following allegations of misconduct relating to one female employee.
The long-serving team boss’ ongoing investigation first became news on Monday when Dutch publication De Telegraph published a report detailing the existence of misconduct allegations against Horner. This was then followed by more information in an AP report, which added that the allegations centred around his aggressive management style.
In response to these allegations, Horner told De Telegraaf: “I completely deny these claims,” while a Red Bull statement confirmed that they were taking the matter “extremely seriously” and that an “independent investigation” was underway.
The public then learned that a hearing had been scheduled for Friday in which Horner would discuss the allegations with the appropriate personnel. However, following insight from Sky Sports News reporter Craig Slater, it is clear that there will not be an immediate decision on his future.
Instead, the investigation is expected to drag on throughout next week, all the way up until the RB20 car launch event, which will take place on 15 February. According to a report from The Times, the decision date could be pushed back even further until the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix at the end of February.
Explaining his knowledge regarding the timeline of events, Slater said: “It’s the first interview with Christian Horner, there might be the potential for a second interview, I think he is prepared for that and is expecting it to be quite a long day.
“As I understand that, I think we’re talking about a process which will start sometime mid-morning and will continue into the afternoon, the investigators have pledged to be through with this.
“For those thinking, this could either be concluded today or possibly in advance of the Red Bull launch, which is the 15th of February next Thursday, well that isn’t a certainty. This is not going to operate as I understand it to a Formula One timetable, it will operate to a timetable appropriate to get a clear and fair solution for both parties.”