Drive to Survive season six premiered on Netflix a couple of weeks ago. I haven’t started it yet because it’s been so busy but also, ever since it was announced that Lewis Hamilton will be driving next year for Ferrari, I feel like the season we’re all really waiting for anyway is next year, and the year after, because it’s going to be really interesting to see the shenanigans on the paddock this season, which will be Lewis’s last with Mercedes and how the driver shift will affect the relationships not only on that team but with the other teams as everyone tries to maneuver around Lewis’s move. 

 

And now, there’s another reason to look ahead to season seven: Christian Horner. 

It was confirmed a few weeks ago he was under investigation for inappropriate and “coercive” behaviour involving a female staff member. Last Wednesday, after an independent investigation cleared him of wrongdoing, a file containing text messages and photos that Christian had sent the woman was sent to something like 200 F1 executives which, of course, cast doubt on the integrity of the investigation. Christian has continued to deny wrongdoing but even some of his peers seem to be calling for a more thorough process, including Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff. 

 

That said, if you’re familiar with F1 and with Drive to Survive, you know that the paddock is not a collegial environment. This is often open warfare, and these people want to get any advantage, milliseconds of it, on their competitors. Toto is looking for a driver to replace Lewis… and Christian Horner’s star driver, Max Verstappen, well, he’s kinda mixed up in all this too because his dadager, Jos Verstappen, has been running his mouth all over the place telling everyone, including the media, including the Daily F-cking Mail, how unhappy he is with Christian’s mess. Jos is suggesting that Red Bull get rid of Christian because of the havoc this scandal has brought to the team. 

Jos is one to talk though – this is a man, a hideous man, who has several assault and harassment allegations on his own record, and is known to be a meddling parent and a giant pain in the ass taking the moral highground and trying to dictate to the team what should be done. 

 

Not that I’m here to defend Christian. Please. Christian is a prick and I personally totally believe what he’s being accused of, and that he’s being protected by an old boy’s club. My point is only that none of these people, with the exception of Lewis, of course, are angels, they all have ulterior motives. And I’m not sure any of them are operating with the goal of making their workplaces safer for women, certainly not Jos f-cking Verstappen. For him, it’s business, always business, and the business of his child and himself, not the woman who’s embroiled in this situation, her best interest and the best interests and safety of other women in the industry are not his concern. 

As for Christian – he’s pulled out a classic move from the celebrity playbook: have your wife at your side when everyone thinks you’re a creep. Geri joined him in Bahrain this weekend and they did their best to sell a united front to the audience. Poor Geri and poor all the wives and girlfriends who’ve been in a similar situation, having to go through behind closed doors, the pain and embarrassment when allegations like these are exposed but must put on a face out in public because at the same time you can’t abandon the person you love (even if they don’t deserve it in the moment). She wouldn’t be the first Spice Girl to have this experience and if there’s anyone who understands her right now, truly, it would be Posh. 

 

Christian had been hoping that after the results of the independent investigation were released last week he could cruise smoothly into the season and not look back. Needless to say, the scandal has only been amplified by the text messages, a tense exchange caught on camera with Jos, and reports that Max might be considering leaving Red Bull and going elsewhere, to say nothing of sponsors reconsidering their deals with the team. It’ll be interesting to see if, by the time we get to the next race this coming weekend in Saudi Arabia, whether or not he still has a job, and if he does, how secure that job still is.