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Red Bull accused of breaching the budget cap: Is Verstappen’s title in jeopardy?

red bull budget cap breach

Max Verstappen has narrowly won his first championship title at the last season’s F1, which was decided in a controversial season finale at Abu Dhabi. However, now his title is suspected to be in jeopardy with the recent allegation accusing Red Bull of breaching the budget cap.

FIA had first introduced the budget cap in 2021, limiting the constructor’s to spend more than $145 million, which was reduced to $140 million this year. 

However, a report by Auto Motor und Sport has speculated that both the Red Bull and Aston Martin have breached this cap and exceeded their limited budget. If proven right, this violation can impose grave punishment, and as a result Verstappen can lose the championship title.

All the teams for F1 have submitted their financial report for last year and FIA will provide an analysis of the teams’ 2021 financial data next week. Before the announcement, an FIA official said, “The FIA is currently finalizing the assessment of the 2021 financial data submitted by all Formula One teams. Alleged breaches of the financial regulations, if any, will be dealt with according to the formal process set out in the regulations.”

As per the FIA rules, a minor penalty or financial penalty would be imposed if a team has exceeded 5% or less than 5% of the budget cap. This includes public reprimand, a deduction in drivers’ or constructors’ points, limitation in the aerodynamic testing and reduction in the cost cap for next season. 

However, if the spending is over 5% of the budget cap then material penalty would be imposed on the team, which would include all of the above and exclusion from the championship.

Therefore, this accusation has put both the Red Bull and Verstappen’s in a brittle situation, as they can have their title canceled. But in a recent interview, Bulls’ team principal Christian Horner denied the accusation and said that he is not aware of any breaches within the team. 

Team Horner has submitted their financial reports to the FIA and are waiting for the certification. According to the team principal their submission of the reports was certainly below the cap and it is now up to FIA to follow the process and hopefully we will get to know the results by mid-week.

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