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Christian Horner

Horner reveals childhood dream before career in F1

Christian Horner didn't envisage a career in Formula 1 as a team boss when he was younger, but he has always had a passion for motorsport.

Christian Horner
To news overview © Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool

Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner has been the main boss of the team since 2005, after deciding in 1999 to call time on his racing career to focus on leadership in motorsport.

Since then he has forged a pathway of success that has included six Formula 1 Drivers' Championships and four Constructors' Championships - with a fifth beckoning.

But getting into the business side of F1 wasn't always Horner's plan. In the early days of his career, he had his mind set on different plans.

"I wanted to be Evil Knievel. To be a stuntman," he explains on the Diary of a CEO podcast. "There was a show, The Fall Guy, with Lee Majors driving around in a big truck and stuntman. I loved it."

"I was always obsessed with cars and speed, which made me fascinated by the world of motorcycles from a young age. At the age of 12 I tried to get a kart, which I saved up for.

"Finally we found something through an advertisement in the back of a newspaper, a second-hand and twenty year-old kart. You couldn't drive it on the grass, so we looked for a track. Suddenly I found out that you could race with it!"

Family influence

The team boss of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez previously raced in Formula 3 and Formula 3000, where he also founded the Arden team that he managed with his Dad.

Horner explains that most of the encouragement to get into the motorsport world came from his family.

"They were a huge influence. My father worked in the car world and had a passion for cars, motorcycles and racing. He also did some marshal work in his youth and was always around cars," he explained.

"My mother always encouraged us to make our dreams come true. She explained to us from childhood that we should not settle for 'average' and she had a lot of perseverance.

"It was through this combination that I discovered the racing world at the age of twelve, after which my father and I traveled across the country for racing, then it became international, and so on.

"I really didn't see myself as a tennis player or anything else. I just wanted to race and I could watch videos of races for hours. I studied all the details and always looked closely at what Nigel Mansell was doing."

"If you have something in mind and you really want it, then it is absolutely achievable. Then you set a goal for yourself and then you focus on that," said Horner, reflecting on his motorsport career.


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