Latest Episode | Cut To The Race Podcast
After being found guilty of breaching the Formula 1 cost cap breach, Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has given his reaction to the FIA’s latest sanctions.
Red Bull were found guilty of breaching the cost cap by $2.2 million and entered into negotiations with the FIA over a suitable punishment. After much deliberation, the new F1 world champions were fined $7 million and a 10% reduction in car development.
Red Bull have 30 days to pay the fine.
Speaking in a press conference ahead of the Mexico City Grand Prix, team boss Christian Horner said:
“I hear people say it’s not a severe penalty, but 10 percent less wind tunnel time and other aerodynamic tools is a draconian penalty. That can cost a quarter to half a second (a lap).”
“It was in all our interests to close the book. We accept the penalties begrudgingly, but we accept them.”
With Max Verstappen leading from the front, Red Bull have been dominant throughout 2022, winning 14 of the last 18 races. This led to many people speculating that Red Bull’s overspend had gone toward improving the performance of the car. But Horner silenced these rumours.
“Not one penny was spent on the performance of the car. I’m astounded that no other teams have found themselves in this position, good for them.”
Horner elaborated that the majority of the money had actually been spent on catering, that was listed as a “company benefit”. He then added that this should not have been included in the cost cap, and ensured that catering will continue to be provided.
The Red Bull boss continued to vent his anger on the matter, even revealing that he was informed just 90 minutes after Verstappen claimed his second world title that his team had breached the cost cap.
“Had we been able to do a resubmission, we would have been under the cap. But that was not permitted.
“By winning the constructors’ championship, we become victims of our own success by having a 5% incremental handicap compared to second and third places, so we will have 15% less than second and 20% less than third. That will have an impact on our ability to perform on track.”
Despite the obvious setback in Red Bull’s chances of claiming another world title in 2023, Horner was more motivated than ever to keep his team on top.
“We might have lost 10% in ATR (aero testing) but we’ve gained 25% in motivation.”
The punishment for Red Bull’s overspend has been deemed lenient by some, but Horner has said that these comments come from their competitors. “If we burned our wind tunnel down it won’t be enough…
“Max Verstappen won the championship fair and square… What we’re talking about here had no effect whatsoever on the performance of his car last year.”
This is a breaking news article and will be updated…
Featured Image Credit: Mark Thompson/Getty Images