Horner set for Red Bull hearing on Friday

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Red Bull team principal Christian Horner is set for a special hearing this Friday regarding unspecified allegations of “inappropriate behaviour” made against him by a female employee of Red Bull Racing.

The hearing is part of an independent investigation ordered by the team’s parent company Red Bull in Austria after it was made aware of the allegations.

"This process, which is already under way, is being carried out by an external specialist barrister,” the company said in a statement released on Monday.

"The company takes these matters extremely seriously and the investigation will be completed as soon as practically possible. It would not be appropriate to comment further at this time."

Horner, who steadfastly maintains his innocence and who was present at Monday’s F1 Commission meeting, will meet with legal representatives on Friday.

While Red Bull Racing, the team, remains silent on the situation, Horner has denied any wrong doing. "I completely deny these claims," he told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.

The development arrives at a critical juncture for the team, as it finalizes its preparations for the upcoming 2024 F1 season.

The launch of the Milton Keynes-based outfit’s new RB20 car is set for February 15th, just days before pre-season testing begins in Bahrain.

Coming off a dominant 2023 season with 21 victories and both championships secured, Red Bull looks to replicate its success under Horner's leadership.

As the longest-serving team principal in F1, the Briton received a CBE in the New Year's Honours list for his contributions to motorsport.

However, the shadow of the ongoing investigation now hangs over both Horner and the team.

As they prepare for the new season, it remains to be seen how these allegations will impact, not only Horner’s status, but also their performance and public image.