The Austrian racing stable had, albeit unwittingly, exceeded budget-cap regulations in 2021. It earned Red Bull a hefty €7 million fine, topped with a reduction in the amount of time the team was allowed to spend in the wind tunnel in 2023. But it did not stop there. Horner confirmed that a Formula One team had approached Red Bull's sponsors to put them in a negative light.
'Team wanted to put a heel on Red Bull'
"It was not about stealing sponsors," the Briton states. "Several of our sponsors were contacted by one of our rival teams saying that we were perhaps bringing them into disrepute" the team boss of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez says. It could have been a reason for those sponsors to turn their backs on Red Bull, if they went along with the story. Which team it was Horner would not say: "I will let your imagination run away with you."