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Christian Horner

Horner suggests 'hangover' behind Norris aggression

Christian Horner has weighed in on the clash between Max Verstappen and Lando Norris in the dying stages of the Austrian Grand Prix.

Verstappen Norris Austria crash
To news overview © XPBimages

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has suggested a hangover from the Austrian sprint race resulted in Lando Norris' aggressive overtake attempts during the grand prix.

After closing up to the back of Max Verstappen following their final planned pit stops, Norris launched an attack on the Dutchman for the victory.

Norris attempted two failed overtaking manoeuvres into Turn 3 before contact was eventually made between the pair, resulting in terminal damage for the McLaren driver.

Verstappen RB20 also collected a puncture but he managed to still secure fifth place at the chequered flag despite the stewards issuing him with a 10-second time penalty for causing the collision.

The pair also went wheel-to-wheel during the sprint race on Saturday, an outing that saw Verstappen overtake Norris for the win.

Horner has proposed that Norris' driving in the grand prix was a direct effect of being beaten by Verstappen the day before.

“He [Norris] was getting his elbows out, it was two tough races [in Austria],” Horner told media including RacingNews365.

“It’s probably a bit of a hangover from [Saturday].

“Max passed him without DRS into Turn 4 and then he got mugged by his team-mate, so there was probably a little bit of a hangover of that.”

Horner hails Red Bull strength in Austria

Verstappen and Red Bull enjoyed a strong start to the 2024 season but have come under increased pressure of late from rival teams, and in particular, from McLaren.

Despite being challenged for race wins in Austria, Horner asserted it was a stronger weekend pace-wise compared to the previous event in Spain.

“It was a shame, because we had everything under control," he remarked.

“I think the final pit stop put Lando back into contention, and then with the advantage on the tyres he had that was enough to get him into the DRS.

“We had a stronger weekend than Barcelona in terms of car pace and performance.

“If you look at qualifying performance, the sprint race, the first and second stint [in the grand prix] which were like-for-like, tyre-for-tyre, I thought we were in good shape.”

Also interesting:

In the latest RacingNews365.com podcast, Ian, Sam and Nick discuss the Austrian GP and look ahead to the British GP. Max Verstappen and Lando Norris' shocking clash is a HUGE talking point, as is Toto Wolff's radio blunder!

Rather watch the podcast? CLICK HERE!

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