“Insanely intense” 2021 F1 title battle ‘aged’ Horner 

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has joked that the intensity of Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton’s 2021 F1 title battle aged him. 
Christian Horner (GBR), Red Bull Racing Team Principal and Max Verstappen (NLD), Red Bull
Christian Horner (GBR), Red Bull Racing Team Principal and Max Verstappen…

Verstappen and Hamilton engaged in a fierce, season-long fight for the world championship which ended in controversial circumstances at the Abu Dhabi finale. 

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Their back-and-forth tussle for supremacy, which included several flashpoints and dramatic collisions, produced one of the most epic F1 seasons in history. 

Verstappen was crowned world champion for the first time following a last lap, final race overtake on Hamilton, denying the Mercedes driver a record-breaking eighth world title. 

A year and a half on from the events of 2021, Horner has admitted the season took its toll.

“It was the most intense, insane period because there was so much going on, on-track and off-track,” he told ESPN

“I didn’t have a single grey hair before 2021! It aged me. It was the most insanely intense year that you could ever imagine. 

“It was like a heavyweight fight from the first race in Bahrain to that final round in Abu Dhabi.” 

(L to R): Toto Wolff (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 Shareholder and Executive Director and Christian Horner (GBR) Red Bull Racing
(L to R): Toto Wolff (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 Shareholder and Executive…

An intriguing subplot of Verstappen and Hamilton’s duel was the rivalry and needle that emerged between Horner and Mercedes counterpart Toto Wolff throughout the season. 

Asked whether the pair have since made up, Horner replied: “I haven’t seen much of him recently. Of course in this competition [there] is needle but there’s also respect. That’s important. 

“They are a great team, a record-breaking team in so many areas. We don’t underestimate them that they’ll be back at some point for sure. I’m sure then Toto will have plenty to say.”

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