Christian Horner has been let off with an official warning by the FIA after he offered to apologise and attend stewards seminar, following his outburst.

After Max Verstappen was handed a five-place grid penalty for his double-waved yellow flag infringement in F1 Qatar GP, Red Bull chief Horner came hard on Sky Sports where he targeted the FIA Race Director Michael Masi and the marshal for waving the flag.

There was confusion towards the end of qualifying after AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly’s puncture and it seemingly caught out many. Verstappen, Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz were called, with penalties for the former two.

The latter was left off as he did what was expected. But Horner didn’t take that well along with the penalty to Verstappen which potentially could have hampered his race but it didn’t as much as he fought back to second. “I think it’s just a rogue marshal that’s stuck a flag out and he’s not been instructed to by the FIA,” Horner said Sky Sports before the Qatar GP. “They’ve got to have control of their marshals, it’s as simple as that because that’s a crucial blow in this world championship for us.

“Now starting P7 at a track you can’t overtake at, that is massive. What’s frustrating is that the race director has said ‘get on, it’s fine, it’s a safe track, finish your laps’, effectively, by turning off the yellow. So all the GPS, all the signals that we have saying ‘track is safe’, even the slippery surface is gone so there’s nothing to communicate to the driver.

“I think there needs to be some grown-ups making grown-up decisions. Just having binary, somebody sticks a yellow flag out, it’s just frustrating. I think the race director should have control of the circuit. He’s the referee at the end of the day and otherwise anybody, you get a marshal that decides to stick a yellow flag out, how does that work?

“Also, the other one I really don’t understand is Carlos Sainz. He’s done exactly the same thing, he hasn’t seen it and driven straight past, gone past with DRS open, fully planted, and he’s lifted about 10 metres before the line and that’s okay,” summed up Horner, for which post-race he was summoned by the FIA.

In the briefing, Horner offered to apologise in the media for his comments – which he did so – and also attend the steward seminar in February 2022, one which Verstappen has earlier attended after his push to Esteban Ocon in Brazil.

“The Stewards heard from the Team Principal (Christian Horner),” started the stewards statement. “He explained that his reaction was one that was made under the pressure of competition following the penalty imposed on the driver of Car 33. The Stewards explained that the marshal concerned was doing his job in precisely the manner prescribed in the International Sporting Code. Mr Horner offered to apologise to the marshal concerned and to explain to the media that he meant no offense. He also offered to participate in the 2022 FIA International Stewards Programme in early February. The Stewards unreservedly accept Mr Horner’s offer.”

Meanwhile, on Sky Sports – after the race, Horner added: “Some comments were made, I think, in our interview earlier where you asked me about the marshalling and I’d like to make it clear that marshals do a wonderful, wonderful job. They are volunteers, and they do a great job. And my frustration in what I voiced earlier wasn’t at marshals, it was at a circumstance.

“So if any offence was taken by any individual, then obviously I apologise for that. But it’s still frustrating to end up with the situation that we had. I spoke with the FIA. I apologised if any offence in any way was created, because it wasn’t the intention. My frustration wasn’t with an individual marshal. It was with a situation where one car had driven, there was no yellow. One car gets a single yellow, one car gets a double yellow.

“So it’s the inconsistency across that. We can learn from that. As a sport we can learn from that, but all the marshals out there: we need you, we think you do a wonderful job. And apologies if any offence was interpreted. I think we’ve actually been fairly pretty good without our emotions. I haven’t been pointing and swearing at cameras or that kind of thing. I’m straight. I tell you what I think. If I think you are being an arse, I will tell you you are being an arse,” summed up Horner.

Here’s how F1 Qatar GP panned out

Here’s why Max Verstappen was penalised

Here’s Christian Horner and Toto Wolff on about multiple topics