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Geri Halliwell ‘set to skip next Formula One race in Saudi Arabia’ after she ‘demanded husband Christian Horner cut ties’ with female colleague he was accused of sending racy messages to


Geri Halliwell will miss this weekend’s Saudi Arabia Grand Prix because she is ‘incredibly busy’, reports have claimed.

The former Spice Girl showed her support for husband Christian Horner during Saturday’s season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix as she walked hand-in-hand with him ahead of the race, before kissing him as Max Verstappen claimed victory for Red Bull.

Red Bull chief Horner – who earns £8million a year – was the subject of an internal investigation over the past month after accusations of ‘coercive behaviour’ towards a female colleague were made against him, before he was cleared on Wednesday.

But then pictures emerged in an anonymous e-mail sent to 149 figures within the sport revealing what appeared to be sexually suggestive WhatsApp messages to the complainant.

Halliwell, 51, is said to have ‘read her husband the riot act’ before putting on a show of unity, with insiders saying that the pop star wants the female employee in question ‘out of the picture’.

Geri Halliwell (left) will skip this weekend's Saudi Arabia Grand Prix as husband Christian Horner (right) continues to fight his texting scandal

Geri Halliwell (left) will skip this weekend’s Saudi Arabia Grand Prix as husband Christian Horner (right) continues to fight his texting scandal

The former Spice Girl celebrates with Horner after Red Bull secured a memorable one-two finish in Bahrain

The former Spice Girl celebrates with Horner after Red Bull secured a memorable one-two finish in Bahrain

Halliwell kisses her husband before the start of the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday afternoon

Halliwell kisses her husband before the start of the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday afternoon

And while Ginger Spice has stood by her husband in a show of solidarity, The Sun are reporting that she will not be attendance for next weekend’s race in Saudi Arabia due to her hectic schedule.

A source told The Sun: ‘Christian will be heading to Saudi Arabia for the race next weekend and I doubt Geri will be there — but that is because she is incredibly busy.’

Another name who will not be present at the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix is Max Verstappen’s father, Jos. 

Verstappen Snr has accused Horner of ‘driving the team apart’ and has hinted that his son could leave Red Bull if things do not change.

Verstappen Snr, who manages three-time world champion son Max, told Mail Sport in Bahrain: ‘There is tension here while he remains in position. The team is in danger of being torn apart. It can’t go on the way it is. It will explode. He is playing the victim, when he is the one causing the problems.’

In further comments to The Telegraph, he said: ‘It cannot continue this way. The situation is not good for the team and is driving people apart.’

Mail Sport revealed on Saturday how Jos, a former team-mate of Michael Schumacher, had a blazing row in Horner’s paddock office after qualifying on Friday night.  

Verstappen, 51, walked out of the fiery meeting before returning to the room and reluctantly shaking hands.

Horner stands behind his wife as Red Bull celebrate taking first and second place in the inaugural race of the season

Horner stands behind his wife as Red Bull celebrate taking first and second place in the inaugural race of the season

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen celebrates winning the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen celebrates winning the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday

The Red Bull chief said his 'focus is on this team' and 'my family' as he kicked off the F1 season

The Red Bull chief said his ‘focus is on this team’ and ‘my family’ as he kicked off the F1 season

According to his affiliates, Horner believes Verstappen Snr has orchestrated a campaign to unseat him for the past few weeks, the implication being that the Dutchman even had a hand in the email leak.

Verstappen denies the claims, saying: ‘That wouldn’t make sense. Why would I do that when Max is doing so well here?’

And the Telegraph goes onto report that during the weekend of the Bahrain Grand Prix – which Max won resoundingly – Jos was openly courting and speaking with Mercedes chief Toto Wolff, who is an enemy of Horner and also seemingly called for his head. 

They were seen together on several occasions in plain sight in the paddock, while the pair both stayed at The Four Seasons hotel and spoke at length there.

However, a spokesman for Red Bull said: ‘There are no issues here. The team are united and we are focused on racing.’ 

Horner, meanwhile, has said he ‘absolutely’ expects to remain in charge at Red Bull for next week’s Grand Prix.

The Red Bull chief told Sky Sports he ‘wouldn’t be here otherwise’ if he thought he was about to lose control of the F1 team. 

After they kissed on camera, Halliwell seemed to look directly at photographers

After they kissed on camera, Halliwell seemed to look directly at photographers

Race winner Max Verstappen and Christian Horner celebrate after winning the F1 Grand Prix in Bahrain

Race winner Max Verstappen and Christian Horner celebrate after winning the F1 Grand Prix in Bahrain

He said: ‘We have got tremendous support, tremendous partners and great shareholders behind us as well.

‘You don’t achieve this kind of result by not being united.’

Asked if he still expects to be in charge by the time next week’s race kicks off in Jeddah, he said: ‘Yes, absolutely. I wouldn’t be here otherwise.’

Before the race Horner and his wife, who he has been married to since 2015, had been spotted in a public display of unity.

Horner had slipped out of the back of Red Bull’s hospitality suite through a gate to meet her as she arrived at the main entrance of the paddock.

They then held hands as they walked through the paddock to Red Bull’s hospitality suite. During the short walk they were mobbed by photographers and TV crews.

Max Verstappen's dad Jos (pictured) is also set to skip next weekend's Saudi Arabia Grand Prix

Max Verstappen’s dad Jos (pictured) is also set to skip next weekend’s Saudi Arabia Grand Prix

It comes after Jos claimed Red Bull will 'explode' if Christian Horner remains at the team

It comes after Jos claimed Red Bull will ‘explode’ if Christian Horner remains at the team

The couple were all smiles at lunch where they were later joined by Red Bull’s head of communication and former F1 team principal Flavio Briatore and Red Bull’s majority shareholder, and Horner ally, Thai billionaire Chalerm Yoovidhya.

Horner headed for the race grid about 45 minutes before the 3pm start, giving Geri a kiss as he left.

Sources told The Sun that the former Spice Girls singer is ‘furious’ with her husband, but has not ‘gone nuclear’.

Friends of Halliwell previously told the publication she had ‘read him the riot act’ over the situation.

Horner, who has always denied the claims, said previously: ‘I have the support of an incredible family, an incredible wife, an incredible team and everybody within that team.

‘And my focus is going on racing, winning racing and doing the best I can.

‘It was a day about starting the season in he best possible way. My focus is on this team, my family, my wife and racing.’

The WhatsApp messages were sent from an anonymous email account to 149 members of the F1 paddock – including the president of the sport’s governing body Mohammed ben Sulayem, F1 chief executive Stefano Domenicali and the grid’s nine other team principals, as well as members of the media.

The bombshell email contained 79 documents, including hundreds of messages, many of them of a sexual nature. 

Horner continues to operate in his role as team principal and chief executive, although it is understood there is considerable unease among the team’s plethora of sponsors and partners.

Geri Halliwell celebrates in Bahrain after Red Bull claimed a one-two victory after a difficult couple of weeks

Geri Halliwell celebrates in Bahrain after Red Bull claimed a one-two victory after a difficult couple of weeks 

He spoke only once about the latest allegations as he made his way from Red Bull’s hospitality suite to the team’s garage on Friday.

‘I am not going to comment on anonymous speculation from unknown sources,’ he said.

When asked what comes next, Horner replied: ‘We go racing.’

MailOnline has contacted Halliwell’s representatives for comment. 



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