Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner says he was "quite flattered" by Toto Wolff's recent comments about him, in which the Mercedes boss called his counterpart a "protagonist in a pantomime".
While the fight for the 2021 F1 World Championship between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton will continue on track this weekend in Mexico, the off-track war of words between the two bosses shows no signs of slowing down either.
Horner was asked about Wolff's latest comments prior to Friday's FP2 session, saying he felt flattered to be called a protagonist. However, he added that what really matters is the action on the track, given the great competition between the two teams.
"We all know Toto has a lot to say," Horner told RacingNews365.com and accredited members of the media.
"I was quite flattered actually, being called the protagonist... If you look at what the definition of that means, you also need an antagonist to have a protagonist.
"One could say that perhaps Toto fills that role pretty well, or if it were a pantomime, maybe the pantomime dame might suit him.
"But look, it's all about what happens on track. It's a great competition between the teams, it's no holds barred. It's pit wall going against pit wall, drivers against drivers, engine suppliers against engine suppliers, chassis against chassis, and it's fantastic.
"We're loving it, and occasionally you're going to get some flack thrown at you. Take it with a pinch of salt, and sometimes even as a compliment."
Satisfaction in beating Mercedes and Wolff?
When asked if he would get any satisfaction in beating Mercedes and Wolff given the back and forth between the two, Horner said that performing on track is what matters most.
He added: "To be honest with you, as far as we're concerned, it's all noise. It all depends on what you do on the track, and if you can do your talking on the track, then that has way more weight and value.
"Toto likes to throw in a comment here or there. That's part of the sport, he's got a lot at stake. He's going for an eighth World Championship with his driver [Hamilton], we're going for a first with Max, and to add to the titles that we've already won.
"Formula 1 is a competition, and as the pressure builds, you see people react to pressure in different ways. We're at the business end of the championship, so you can feel the tension, and that will only grow the longer this goes.
"If Toto wants to make a comment or two, I'm fine with that. It's pantomime season coming up anyway."
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