During a recent Formula 1 practice session, Red Bull team boss Christian Horner engaged in a lighthearted exchange with Sky Sports pit lane reporter Ted Kravitz, resulting in an unexpected gesture and an on-air apology from commentator David Croft.
The incident occurred on a chaotic Friday practice session that extended into the night due to a canceled first practice and a subsequent two-and-a-half-hour delay caused by a loose manhole cover damaging two cars. As the cars hit the track, Kravitz bantered with Horner about the extended celebration of the Red Bull chief’s 50th birthday.
Referencing Horner’s new glasses, Kravitz playfully remarked, “Who, approaching 50 years old, would wear their glasses in the pit lane, wanting to pretend that they actually don’t need them?” Unbeknownst to Kravitz, Horner, who wasn’t wearing glasses at the time, overheard the comment.
Alerted by Sky colleague Karun Chandhok, Kravitz realized Horner had turned around. The camera focused on the Red Bull pit wall, capturing Horner cheekily displaying a less-than-subtle middle finger to Kravitz, accompanied by a wry smile.
“Christian, where are the glasses? Put the glasses back on!” exclaimed Kravitz, unaware of the gesture. Upon realization, he jokingly added, “Oh, he’s giving me a happy little greeting there. Honestly, every time I keep putting a compliment Christian’s way, he doesn’t like it. He’s 50, and I’m approaching 50, and we both need the glasses now. And the glasses are on.”
Commentator Croft swiftly acknowledged the incident, offering an on-air apology, “He did put the glasses on eventually, thank you Christian. And apologies if you were offended by the hand signals that were going on from the Red Bull pit wall.”
The light-hearted moment contrasted with the chaos of the day for F1’s newest crown jewel. The loose manhole cover damaged Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari, and the delays forced fans to leave before any meaningful running occurred, effectively turning the practice into a closed-door event.
Despite the day’s challenges, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff dismissed the notion that it was an embarrassment for F1. Angrily responding to such suggestions, Wolff stated, “That is not a ‘black eye’ – this is nothing. They’re going to seal the drain covers, and nobody’s going to talk about that tomorrow morning anymore.”
In the midst of the mayhem, Horner’s playful gesture added a touch of humor to an otherwise tumultuous day in the world of Formula 1.