Christian Horner Reflects on Maiden Red Bull Racing Victory Ten Years On

by Paul Hensby
Sebastian Vettel & Mark Webber - 2009 Chinese Grand Prix - Shanghai International Circuit

Christian Horner says the Chinese Grand Prix will always hold a special place in the hearts of Red Bull Racing, with the Milton Keynes outfit having claimed their first Formula 1 victory at the Shanghai International Circuit back in 2009.

Back in 2009, Sebastian Vettel led home a one-two for the team ahead of team-mate Mark Webber in a race held in difficult conditions, with heavy rain forcing the organisers to start the race behind the safety car, and it was not until the ninth lap that the green flag fell and the drivers were unleashed to race.

Despite another safety car intervention for debris, caused when then-BMW Sauber driver Robert Kubica crashed into the back of Toyota F1 Team driver Jarno Trulli, Vettel was able to navigate his way to the front, while Webber was able to finally make a move stick on Brawn GP’s Jenson Button after a great battle between the duo.

Horner, the Team Principal of Red Bull, said it was a huge moment in the history of Red Bull Racing, and seeing the pride and tears of his engineers and mechanics was something he will continue to cherish, even though the wrong national anthem was played for the team on the podium.

“It was a massive thing to go and pick the constructors trophy up, even though it was broken and missing one of its handles!” said Horner.  “It was a huge moment to look down and see the pride and emotion of the Team, to see Helmut [Marko] almost crying, everyone looked so proud of what they’d achieved.

“Shanghai will always be a special place for Red Bull Racing because it was the scene of that first victory.”

Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly will be aiming to take Red Bull’s sixtieth victory this weekend in China, the third round of the 2019 Formula 1 World Championship.

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