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‘If Christian Horner stays at Red Bull, Max Verstappen leaves’: Michael Schumacher’s ex-F1 brother Ralf is convinced ‘playing the victim’ by Geri Halliwell’s husband will end in world champion driver quitting

  • Horner was acquitted last week of ‘coercive behavior’ towards his colleague
  • Jos Verstappen sensationally revealed a huge rift within the Formula 1 team
  • Images emerged of Horner and Verstappen in a heated conversation in Bahrain

Formula 1 expert Ralf Schumacher believes Christian Horner’s refusal to leave Red Bull Racing will lead to star man Max Verstappen leaving the team.

Horner was cleared of ‘coercive conduct’ towards a female employee, although a day later screenshots of a text message conversation between the pair were leaked via an anonymous email.

The husband of former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell has faced fresh unrest after allegations were published in a 19-page investigation naming his accuser, while footage has emerged of the beleaguered F1 boss feuding with Jos Verstappen – the father from his star driver Max.

Verstappen Snr exclusively told Mail Sport that the team would ‘explode’ if Horner remained in charge of the team. “He’s playing the victim, when he’s the one causing the problems.” He added.

Schumacher, a former Formula 1 driver and brother of sports legend Michael, shares a similar philosophy and is confident Horner will oust the three-time world champion.

Former Formula 1 driver Ralf Schumacher (pictured) is convinced Christian Horner staying at Red Bull will oust Max Verstappen

Jos Verstappen (right) has been Horner's most outspoken critic in recent days, while Max defended his father and insisted he was fair

Jos Verstappen (right) has been Horner’s most vocal critic in recent days, while Max defended his father and insisted he was fair

Red Bull team boss Horner (pictured) was spotted in Jeddah ahead of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

Red Bull team boss Horner (pictured) was spotted in Jeddah ahead of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

The beleaguered Red Bull boss has been fighting for his job this month amid a text message drama

The beleaguered Red Bull boss has been fighting for his job this month amid a text message drama

Geri Halliwell and Horner made a very public show of unity at the Bahrain GP last weekend

Geri Halliwell and Horner made a very public show of unity at the Bahrain GP last weekend

“If Christian Horner holds on to his seat with all his might,” he said Austrian outlet Kronen Zeitung. “He will not only damage Red Bull, he will also ensure that Max Verstappen leaves the team.”

The tensions within the team highlighted by Jos Verstappen led to speculation that Max could not only be on his way to leaving Red Bull, but could even opt for a move to bitter rival Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton leaving his seat in 2025.

Jos dined with the Mercedes team boss last week ahead of the opening race in Bahrain and was then seen in dialogue with the German during the weekend event.

Ahead of this weekend’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Max passionately defended his father, who he says is ‘not a liar’.

Schumacher believes Wolff is the big winner of the Red Bull battle and predicted the 52-year-old would be excited about what is unfolding at the Milton Keynes team.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff dined with Verstappen Snr ahead of the Bahrain GP and was subsequently spotted with the Dutchman during the race weekend

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff dined with Verstappen Snr ahead of the Bahrain GP and was subsequently spotted with the Dutchman during the race weekend

“I look at it very critically,” he added. ‘What has been achieved at this moment is that the best team that has existed in the last ten years – with Mercedes – is currently destroying itself from within.

‘I think Toto Wolff is there as a spectator with relatively great joy. He can come out of this a big winner.”