Geri Horner divides opinion as she joins husband for Red Bulls F1 title win

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner was bursting with pride after watching Max Verstappen clinch the championship ahead of Lewis Hamilton — and the presence of his wife Geri Horner helped him gather his emotions.

The former Spice Girls singer joined her Formula One supremo husband at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as part of the Red Bull entourage for the final showdown between Verstappen and Hamilton.

The Briton had led all 57 laps until Verstappen, aided by a late safety car due to Nicholas Latifi’s crash, was able to pass with fresher tyres with only a few corners to go.

There were controversies involved due to the decision made by FIA race director Michael Masi after telling the drivers lapped cars would not be allowed to overtake, before reversing his decision minutes later.

But the Red Bull camp were too busy celebrating with euphoria, with Christian Horner reduced to tears as he embraced Dr Helmut Marko, chief engineer Adrian Newey and his wife, Geri.

F1 viewers were surprised to see the 48-year-old appear on screen live on Sky Sports to give her take on the race and congratulate Verstappen — and not all were pleased to see her on screen.

One Twitter user named Anna likened the decision to interview the former singer to interviewing a “football manager’s wife”.

They tweeted: “Why are they interviewing Geri Halliwell? That would be like a football team winning a trophy and bringing on the managers wife for an interview.”

One disgruntled viewer suggested that F1 had become the “Horner show” after Geri’s appearance.

Another fan, Ian Ogilvie, chose to draw on how Horner, nee Halliwell, was described in the caption that appeared on the screen.

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“I thought we wouldn’t see any more controversy but Sky introducing Geri Halliwell as a ‘singer & songwriter’ really takes it up a notch,” they joked.

But not all viewers were against Horner’s wife grabbing her share of the limelight. Journalist Bella Mackie weighed in with her support.

“I do not care about incredibly rich men driving cars so formula 1 does nothing for me,” she tweeted.

“BUT I am *always* here for how Geri Halliwell became lady of the manor and now is deep in the welly and Barbour aesthetic.”

However, their views were not important to the Red Bull boss, who was only focused on lauding his 24-year-old champion Verstappen after a breathless finish to the race.

"I said Max was going to need something from the racing gods in the last 10 laps so thank you Nicholas Latifi for that Safety Car,” he said.

“We felt hard done by with the stewards at the beginning of the race but they did great to get the race going again.

"It's been an insane competition, and for Max to win the world championship it's not just about here, it's the whole year. Lewis has been a phenomenal opponent all year, he's a great world champion and that's what makes it more valid to win this.

"We were screaming at him [Michael Masi} 'let them race'. That's what we've been talking about all year and this championship came down to the last lap.

"A great strategy call to make that pit stop, to take that set of softs and then it was down to Max and make it happen.

"It's unheard of to leave the cars unlapped. You could see they wanted to get the race going again and they don't need to catch up the back of the paddock. They made absolutely the right call – difficult circumstances and they called it right.

"I'm just so proud of Max, so proud of the team for what we've been through and what we've achieved against some fierce and great opponents."

The matter is still not settled yet, as Mercedes have launched two protests to dispute Masi’s decision and a possible overtake by Verstappen under the safety car.

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