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Christian Horner

Jos Verstappen: Red Bull will be 'torn apart' if Horner stays

Max Verstappen's father has addressed the ongoing crisis around Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner.

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Jos Verstappen feels Red Bull will be "torn apart" if Christian Horner stays on as Team Principal and CEO.

The extraordinary comments come after a Bahrain Grand Prix weekend in which Horner was cleared of inappropriate behaviour by Red Bull's parent company, only then for a leak of purported WhatsApp messages and pictures - allegedly between Horner and the complainant - to emerge on Friday.

FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem and F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali held talks about the situation, with Horner arriving in the paddock on Saturday for the race with wife Geri in a public display of togethernesses.

RacingNews365 understands that forensic inspection of the email has been carried out by specialists to determine who sent it and whether the messages are genuine - but race-winner Max Verstappen's father Jos is clear he wants Horner out.

"There is tension here while he remains in position,' Verstappen Senior told The Daily Mail.

"The team is in danger of being torn apart. It can't go on the way it is. It will explode.

"He is playing the victim, when he is the one causing the problems."

When it was put to Verstappen that he could have been behind the leak to destabilise Horner, he firmly rejected the idea.

"That wouldn't make sense," he said. "Why would I do that when Max is doing so well here?"

Horner himself conducted his traditional post-race media briefing where he was asked about the allegations in a feisty session where Red Bull's Head of Communications Paul Smith had to shut down an attempt to ask whether the alleged WhatsApp messages were genuine.

"I'm not going to comment on what motives whatever person may have for doing this," Horner explained to media including RacingNews365.

"My focus is on this team, my family, my wife and going racing. I have the support of an incredible family, of an incredible wife, of an incredible team and everybody within that team.

"My focus is on going racing and winning races and doing the best that I can."

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