Red Bull chief Christian Horner declared he was “f*****” from his F1 efforts throughout 2023 after winning the John Bolster award for technical excellence at the Autosport Awards on Sunday night. The 50-year-old played a starring role as Red Bull got their hands on this season’s Constructors’ Championship and Max Verstappen won his third consecutive Drivers’ Championship.
Horner, who joined the Red Bull set-up in 2005, was recognised at the Grosvenor House on Park Lane in London. The prize is awarded for a lifetime of technical excellence in motorsport, with Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff and Red Bull chief technical officer Adrian Newey both winning it in the past.
Horner paid tribute to the Red Bull team after going up on stage to collect his award as he explained: “It’s been quite a year. And seeing the guys, the team standing up there – what they’ve achieved this year has been absolutely phenomenal. To win 21 out of 22 races with this car has been quite sensational.” And after being asked if he was tired, he bluntly added: “Yeah, I’m f*****.”
Horner’s remark was met with a mixture of shock and laughter in the audience. And the Red Bull boss then paid tribute to Spice Girl wife Geri Horner as he added: “My wife has played a key role, and all partners do, with 22 races. The back end of the year has been particularly tough.
Click here to join our WhatsApp community to be the first to receive breaking and exclusive F1 news.
“It’s been a tough season and we’ve seen a few things happen this year that were incredible. I’d like to congratulate [Red Bull engineer] Gianpiero Lambiase this year on what he has achieved with Max [Verstappen], putting up with grumpy Max on occasion.”
Red Bull also got their hands on the international competition car of the year award, with Verstappen named international racing driver of the year.
Verstappen is already the overwhelming favourite to win the 2024 F1 title thanks to Red Bull’s imperious form in recent years. And following the end of the last campaign, Horner told Sky Sports F1: “This car is going to go down in this history books as a very special car. To have won 21 out of 22, just missing out on Singapore – which leaves room for improvement.
“What a year, more than anything all the men and women behind the scenes, back in the factory, across the whole business, from the catering staff to the van drivers, to the receptionists, to the designers, to the manufacturing.”