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Horner: Everybody would like a conclusion of investigation as soon as possible

Horner: Everybody would like a conclusion of investigation as soon as possible

Horner: Everybody would like a conclusion of investigation as soon as possible

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner indicated on Thursday he hopes the ongoing investigation into alleged misconduct by him will be resolved “as soon as possible” as the Formula 1 season nears.

The Red Bull parent company said on Feb. 5 it was investigating allegations of misconduct toward a team employee. Horner denies any wrongdoing and has continued to work. No timeline for the investigation to conclude has been made public.

“Everybody would like a conclusion as soon as possible, but I´m really not at liberty to comment about the process,” Horner said during the second of three days of preseason testing in Bahrain. The first race is next week.

F1 and governing body FIA have previously issued statements urging a quick resolution to the investigation. McLaren chief executive Zak Brown said on Thursday he hoped the investigation would be “handled in a very transparent way” following a similar call for transparency the day before from Mercedes’ Toto Wolff.

On the track, Carlos Sainz Jr. led the way for Ferrari with a time that was quickest by .758 seconds from Red Bull’s Sergio Perez, with Lewis Hamilton third-fastest for Mercedes. Hamilton was driving in an official F1 event for Mercedes for the first time since his move to Ferrari for next season was announced. He will replace Sainz at the Italian team.

Teams can only have one driver on track per testing session. Defending champion Max Verstappen, who was fastest on Wednesday, did not drive for Red Bull on Thursday.

The morning session of testing was cut short after Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Hamilton ran over a loose drain cover on a curb. That left debris on the circuit and led to an inspection of the track.

The reduced session cut into Perez’s track time, so Red Bull changed its plans and gave him the car for the evening session too.

Perez´s day was briefly disrupted again when his car seemed to suffer a technical fault and he had to crawl back to the pits in first gear, though he was soon underway again.

The third and last day of testing is Friday before the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix next week at the same venue. (The Associated Press)