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Horner describes Toto Wolff as a pantomime dame

NEWS STORY
06/11/2021

Following Toto Wolff's claim that nemesis Christian Horner is like the "protagonist in a pantomime", the Red Bull boss describes his Mercedes counterpart as F1's very own Widow Twankey.

The two have been involved in various little spats all season, referring to one another as a "windbag" and "control freak", and while speaking to the Daily Mail last week, Wolff likened Horner to a "protagonist in a pantomime", suggesting that some people deliberately play up for the TV cameras like "little actors, like Hollywood".

As the Mexican Grand Prix weekend got underway, Horner was quick to respond.

"Look, we all know Toto has a lot to say," said the Briton. "I was quite flattered actually, I mean, being called a protagonist, if you look at what the definition of that means, I think you also need an antagonist to have a protagonist.

"One could say that perhaps Toto fulfils that role pretty well," he continued, "for if it were a pantomime then the pantomime dame role might suit him.

"But look, it's all about what goes on, on track," he added. "I think it's a great competition between the teams, it's no-holds barred, pit walls going against pit wall, drivers against drivers, engine suppliers against engine suppliers, chassis against chassis. It's fantastic, we're loving it and occasionally you're going to get some flak thrown at you - but take it with a pinch of salt and sometimes even as a compliment."

A British tradition, one must assume that Wolff, who now resides in Monaco, learned of pantomime through his Scottish wife.

Asked, despite the jibes and name calling, which, if nothing else, is good box office for those new fans attracted to the sport by Netflix' Drive to Survive series, if there is mutual respect between the two, Horner said: "I have no issue with Toto. I think he has done a great job there in a team he inherited.

"Yeah of course there is respect," he continued, "Mercedes are a phenomenal team. They have achieved great things and there is of course a respect between the two teams. But it is a competition. You can't just accept... if we roll over and accept that Mercedes win every race, it's pretty boring... Why do we turn up? We are here to go racing. We want to take the championship. We have been fighting to get into this position to take the fight to Mercedes for you know seven long seasons now and of course we have got ourselves into a competitive position, we want to make sure that we do our very, very best to convert this between now and the end of the year. It will be by far our biggest achievement in Formula 1 if we manage to do that in either of the championships.

"To be honest with you as far as we are concerned it is all noise," he said of the comments invariably aimed at Red Bull. "It all depends on what you do on the track and if you can do your talking on the track then that has way more weight and value.

"Toto likes to throw in a comment here or there and that's part of the needle, that's part of the sport. He's got a lot at stake. He's going for an eighth world championship with his driver. We are going for a first with Max and to add to the titles we have already won.

"Formula 1 is a competition and as the pressure builds you see people react to pressure in different ways. We are at the business end of that championship now and you can feel the tension and that will only grow the longer this goes on.

"So if Toto wants to make a comment or two, I'm fine with that. It's pantomime season coming up anyway, so it is what it is."

Of course, in terms of pantomimes, the one comment 'Buttons' Horner will be looking forward to making come the final laps in Abu Dhabi, is when Max Verstappen asks the whereabouts of his title rival, Lewis Hamilton as the Red Bull star takes the chequered flag.

"He's behind you!" Horner will cheekily respond.

Check out our Saturday gallery from Mexico City, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Roli, 06/11/2021 17:47

"Handbags at dawn ????"

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Mad Matt, 06/11/2021 15:42

"Christian and Marko are also pantomime caricatures :-)

They're as bad as each other... now let's get on with the race....."

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