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Christian Horner

Horner unhappy with Mercedes' actions: FIA need to look into it

Christian Horner has shared more details about his visit to the stewards following the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, as Mercedes protested against Red Bull's Max Verstappen and the race result.

To news overview © Michael Potts / RN365

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner wants the FIA to reconsider whether lawyers should be permitted during stewards' hearings, after Mercedes made use of one for their post-race summons in Abu Dhabi.

Mercedes lodged two protests over the title-deciding race after a late Safety Car turned the encounter on its head, paving the way for Max Verstappen to take the win, and world title, away from Lewis Hamilton.

While Red Bull sent their usual representatives to the stewards' office, Mercedes backed up Head of Trackside Engineering Andrew Shovlin and Sporting Director Ron Meadows with QC Paul Harris.

"It needs to be considered by the FIA"

Horner has expressed his frustration at the move and wants the sport's governing body to reassess for the future.

Speaking in an interview with The Telegraph, Horner said: "We were summoned to the stewards' hearing and confronted with a barrister I had last seen dealing with a tyre issue that they had back in 2013 - suddenly you're in the thick of it."

Horner feels that Mercedes' actions were designed to intimidate the stewards.

"The stewards in the room, they weren't professional lawyers," he continued. "There was a finance guy, the driver steward and a local steward in there. Is it fair then to be faced with a QC? That can be quite intimidating.

"He's not an operational member of the team, he's not a Sporting Director. This is an issue that needs to be considered by the FIA. We don't want to be taking lawyers, let alone barristers, racing."

Mercedes "winning machine" had to end

While Horner has revealed that Wolff texted him personally to congratulate Red Bull and Verstappen on their title, he was disappointed by their post-race disappearance.

Hamilton offered an initial reaction during the mandatory post-race interviews and joined Verstappen on the podium, though did not show for the drivers' press conference, nor did Mercedes conduct any media duties.

"I did find it disappointing that there wasn't a single member of the Mercedes team below the podium," Horner added.

"It's a shame that they've taken it in the manner they have. Emotions run high. They have been a winning machine for eight years now, and at some point that has to come to an end."

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