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Christian Horner

Horner praises rival team boss Wolff for 'courageous' message

Following Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff's admission that he has been seeing a psychiatrist to combat mental health issues since 2004, Red Bull's Christian Horner has praised the Austrian for speaking out and raising awareness.

Horner Wolff
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To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool / Getty Images

Christian Horner says Toto Wolff deserves great credit for going public about his struggles with mental health.

The Austrian recently told UK publication The Times that he had had more than 500 hours of psychiatric therapy since 2004, prompting Horner to praise his rival's candidness.

"All credit to Toto for having the courage to talk out about his issues with mental health," Horner told media, including RacingNews365.com, during the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend.

"It's something that there is much more of a spotlight on these days.

"It's something, as a business, that we're acutely aware of, and something that we're looking to be proactive [about].

"I'm fortunate that I haven't had issues personally, but I've had friends suffer as a result of mental health issues, so, of course, it is an important topic, and I think it's very good to highlight it.

"I think being able to talk about it is a positive thing."

Wolff: Mental health issues are a 'superpower'

Wolff also discussed his mental health struggles at an earlier press conference ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix.

"I was always someone who has been open in this closed environment," said Wolff.

"It's not the flavour of the month to talk about your own sufferings in terms of mental health, but people [suffer with mental health] who are perceived to have it all – the Formula 1 lifestyle, all smiles, winning a few races and championships.

"I remember when I was young, I saw these people and I thought, 'Well, they are not having these issues to battle'.

"There has been a community around professional sports people that have come out to show that they are no different to anybody else.

"What I want to do is encourage people to seek help and to work on it, and not see it as a stigma of being a dysfunctionality or not feeling adequate.

"On the contrary, it's a superpower and it's no different than diabetes or any other any other illness that is not as stigmatised as [mental health] is."

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