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Johnny Herbert: Christian Horner should step aside to prevent Max Verstappen exit

Former F1 driver Johnny Herbert is convinced that Red Bull boss Christian Horner should resign to prevent losing Max Verstappen to rival Mercedes.

The saga began in early February when allegations of inappropriate conduct surfaced, thrusting Horner into the spotlight and dominating headlines ever since. 

Despite an independent investigation clearing him of any wrongdoing just before the Bahrain Grand Prix, the situation took a new turn when purported material from the investigation, including text messages and images, was leaked to select media personnel and team insiders.

The fallout from the scandal has had a profound impact on Red Bull Racing, with Jos Verstappen, father of star driver Max Verstappen, publicly calling for Horner's departure to prevent further damage to the team's cohesion. This sentiment was echoed by others within the team, raising questions about the leadership stability under Horner's management.

Adding to the turmoil, speculation swirled around the potential suspension of Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko during the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix weekend. This prompted a strong response from reigning world champion Max Verstappen, who indicated that if Marko were to leave, he would follow suit, hinting at the gravity of the situation within the team.

Johnny Herbert, a seasoned voice in the F1 community, has now weighed in, expressing concerns that the ongoing turmoil at Red Bull Racing is pushing Max Verstappen towards leaving the team. 

"It's not a good thing for F1 with the whole thing going on and the belated heat on it," Herbert told betideas.com.

"It doesn't help the situation for Red Bull who have the best driver in the world at the present time.

"And they're very close to pushing [Max Verstappen] out off the team, I've heard they are getting quite close with the deal with Mercedes. It seems like a stupid thing to do, their biggest asset is not the Christian Horner show.

"It would be crazy for Max to leave because of the situation. Jos has said it will be very destructive and rip it apart and I think it's gone on for far too long. In some respects, Christian should really think about it and step aside."

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