Red Bull team principal Horner was on stage being awarded the trophy for winning the constructors’ championship by Ben Sulayem at the FIA’s Prize Giving Gala, with several F1 drivers watching on in the crowd.
Ben Sulayem immediately teased: “This cup is nothing to do with the cost cap, okay?”
“This is from the FIA so we’re not going to deduct it from your cost cap, okay?”
Horner said: “That’s very generous, thank you.”
Red Bull were found in breach of the F1 cost cap this season and were forced to pay a fine. They were at loggerheads with rival teams who were pushing for harsher punishments.
Horner made the entire moment even more awkward by mentioning “confusion” at the Japanese Grand Prix when Max Verstappen was confirmed as the 2022 champion – due to the rain-affected rain, nobody knew how many points were awarded at the end of the race. Verstappen was ultimately named as champion in a muted and confused way.
Ben Sulayem told Horner: “One thing you said about Japan, you said it was controversial. No!
“The FIA was blamed for the points but it was not the FIA which made the rules, it was the teams who made the rules and we were implementing it.”
It ended with a very embarrassing handshake before Horner and Ben Sulayem went their separate ways, much to the amusement of several drivers who were watching on.