Wolff critical of ‘vague, opaque’ Red Bull statement on Horner

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Christian Horner was cleared by Red Bull GmbH of allegations of inappropriate behaviour levied upon the Briton, but Mercedes boss Toto Wolff criticized the energy drink company’s "vague" statement and its complete lack of transparency.

Horner was cleared of any wrongdoing following a lengthy investigation entrusted to an independent lawyer to determine the validity of a claim of inappropriate behaviour that was brought to the attention of Red Bull GmbH by a female member of Red Bull Racing.

During the probe, Horner who was interviewed at length by the investigator, repeatedly denied the allegations. The process eventually concluded with the grievances expressed by the complainant being dismissed.

A statement released by Red Bull on Wednesday underscored the company’s “fair, rigorous and impartial” investigation process. However, the statement made clear that all private information related to the parties and third parties who assisted in the investigation would remain confidential.

Speaking on Thursday in Bahrain, Wolff was clearly unsatisfied with Red Bull’s unwillingness to divulge the details of Horner’s situation, insisting that it is a lost opportunity for F1 to learn from the case.

“I just read the statement which was pretty basic, and my personal opinion is that we can't look behind the curtain," Wolff told the media.

"At the end of the day, there is a lady in an organisation that has spoken to HR and said there was an issue, and it was investigated.

"Yesterday, the sport received the message that it was 'all fine, we have looked at it' and I believe that as a global sport on such critical topics, it needs more transparency.

"I wonder what the sport's position is,” the Austrian added. “We are competitors, we are a team and can have our own opinions, but it is more like a general reaction that we as a sport need to address what is right in that situation.

"Again as I said, we are being asked questions here as competitors, are we talking as competitors and with the right values, morales based on the speculation," Wolff added when questioned further by RacingNews365.

"As a sport, we cannot, we cannot afford to leave things in the vague, the opaque on critical topics like this because it is going to catch us out.

"Because eventually we are in a super transparent world, and eventually things are going to happen, and I think the organisation (Red Bull GmbH) have looked it at and it is 'Okay and we can move on' and not try to supress it.

"I am not saying this has happened, but we are standing from the outside looking in at statements, press releases and it seems it is not as modern as things are in the real world, but maybe we are in a bubble in Formula 1 and think that is okay."

Queried on the topic, Williams team principal suggested that trust in Red Bull’s “strong process” should prevail at the end of the day.

"Within what has happened at Red Bull, I trust that Red Bull has done a strong process, we have to in that circumstance,” commented Vowles.

"What I want is us as a sport, though, to be proud that we're sitting on several foundations that are of inclusivity, openness and transparency.

"All I asked for in that matter is that we make sure we have faith and trust in all of us as organisations that are working with the same standards."

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