Disclosure: This article covers topics that may be triggering to some, including sexual assault.
Monday morning brought news that Red Bull's Formula One boss, Christian Horner, is being investigated by the team for allegations that have come down on "inappropriate behavior." Horner has been with the team since 2005.
The news was first reported by De Telegraaf (Erik Van Heren) a Dutch language newspaper. The article, per a translation, says that the company kicked off an "independent investigation" after learning of the allegations that Horner engaged in inappropriate behavior toward one particular Red Bull employee.
Daily Mail added that the alleged behavior was, "incredibly controlling," toward a female coworker. The Sunday Times also reported that detail (subscription required).
Christian Horner replies to accustations being investigated by Red Bull F1 team
"I completely deny these claims," was Horner's simple and straightforward statement on the matter Monday morning to De Telegraaf (original print: "Ik ontken deze beweringen volledig"). A spokesperson gave ESPN a similar quote, saying he, ""rejects these claims entirely."
Horner was a bit more colorful speaking to Daily Mail:
"Confirmation of the probe today follows 36 hours of denials from the team based in Milton Keynes of any alleged wrongdoing. Horner has also described the accusations as 'nuts', in a message protesting his innocence to MailOnline."
De Telegraaf's story taken down, then put back up
According to Daily Mail, the original reporting from De Telegraaf was taken down after legal action was threatened, presumably by Horner or Red Bull, but put back live on the site after a different website reported the same information.
Will Christian Horner remain with the team during investigation?
It is too early to say what what the outcome of the independent investigation into Horner's conduct will be. Red Bull is expected to unveil its 2024 car later this month, with the 2024 Formula One season starting with pre-season testing on the 21st. It is a crucial time for the team principal to be present, but understandably, there may be a need for him to distance himself as the investigation goes on.
For now, the answer is that we do not know the extent of the impact of the investigation, as it is just getting underway.