Horner: Red Bull wants to win F1 title in the right way

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner insists Red Bull does care how it wins the Formula 1 world championship this year, amid fears of dirty tricks ruining the Abu Dhabi showdown.

A bad-tempered grand prix in Saudi Arabia, which was marred by sniping from both Red Bull and Mercedes camps - plus a collision and more controversy between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen - has pointed towards an escalation in the F1 title battle intensity.

Verstappen has shown he is not afraid to take things to the limit in his battles with Hamilton, with both teams pushing the rules to the limit, and that could spell trouble in the season finale.

But while tensions between the Mercedes and Red Bull teams are high, Horner is adamant that his squad wants to win the title in the right way.

Asked if he cared how the championship was won, Horner said: "Yes, of course we do.

"You want to win on the track. Not in a stewards' room, not in a gravel trap. You want to win it.

"It's been a tough fight all the way through the year. There's been some fantastic racing between these two drivers, and I hope that it's a fair and clean race in Abu Dhabi."

Verstappen and Hamilton are heading to the F1 season finale in Abu Dhabi tied on points, for what is effectively a winner takes all shootout.

On countback, however, Verstappen has more wins to his name, so if neither driver scores points the Dutchman will clinch the crown.

While Red Bull has seen Hamilton cut down Verstappen's points advantage with three consecutive wins, Horner insists his team is not downbeat about the way momentum appears to be with its rival.

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Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B , Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B , Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

"There's absolutely no issue with that, we're a team that goes through it," he said. "We're going to Abu Dhabi equal on points, but leading by virtue of the number of wins.

"Who'd have thought at the beginning of the year, if you had given us this chance of one shot to win this world championship in Abu Dhabi at the last race after 21 races of an intense battle with Mercedes, I think we all as a team would have absolutely bitten your arm off for that.

"I think you guys probably would have as well, based on the dominance that we've seen the last seven years."

Red Bull is no stranger to title-deciding final rounds against other teams, having seen Sebastian Vettel come out on top in Abu Dhabi in 2010 and Brazil in 2012.

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"It's the first time since we were last there in 2012, and 2010 with Sebastian, that rival teams have gone into the final race fighting for the drivers' world championship," he said.

"There'll be no problem in raising morale going into this final weekend. It's been a crazy race here, we've actually come out of it with a second place, and we managed to get ourselves into a lead, and lead a large percentage of the race once again.

"But Lady luck's shining on Lewis at the moment. Ocon drove over his front wing at the start, he drove into the back of Max. You know, he's ridden his luck."

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