Red Bull’s Christian Horner has been handed an official warning by race stewards following comments he made after Verstappen was dealt a five-place grid penalty in Doha.
The Team Principal was speaking live on air before today’s Grand Prix when he suggested that Max had been reprimanded unfairly and that it was a “rogue marshall” who waved a yellow flag without FIA instruction.
Speaking to Sky Sports F1, Horner said: “I think it’s just a rogue marshal that’s stuck a flag out. He has not been instructed to by the FIA. They’ve got to have control of their marshals, it’s as simple as that.”
His comments seem to have rubbed stewards the wrong way, and in response issued the following statement explaining the severity of their warning: “He [Horner] explained that his reaction was one that was made under the pressure of competition following the penalty imposed on the driver of Car 33.
“The Stewards explained that the marshall concerned was doing his job in precisely the manner prescribed in the International Sporting Code.
“Mr. Horner offered to apologise to the marshal concerned and to explain to the media that he meant no offense.
“He also offered to participate in the 2022 FIA International Stewards Programme in early February.
“The Stewards unreservedly accept Mr. Horner’s offer.”
Horner stayed true to his word and appeared on-air with Sky F1 to explain that his comments weren’t intended to offend anyone: “Some comments were made in our interview earlier where you asked me about the marshalling,” he said.
“I’d like to make it clear that marshals do a wonderful, wonderful job. They’re volunteers, they do a great job.
“My frustration in what I voiced earlier wasn’t at marshals, it was at a circumstance, and so if any offence was taken by any individual then obviously I apologise for that.
“Still frustrating to end up with the situation that we had. But a phenomenal recovery by Max and the team today.”