Breaking: Ferrari, Mercedes and two other F1 teams under investigation by FIA

Mercedes and Red Bull are both involved in the America's Cup.

Red Bull, Mercedes, Ferrari and Aston Martin are all set to be investigated by the FIA, with the governing body wanting to know how much influence the teams non-F1 activities are having on their performance.

According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, the FIA want clarification on what the four mentioned teams are doing away from F1, with the likes of Mercedes having previously moved staff from their F1 team to work on the America’s Cup for INEOS.

This comes following the introduction of a new technical directive, TD45, which has been introduced to control the influence non-F1 operations have on the teams.

The governing body essentially wants to have more control over what the teams are doing outside of F1, with the FIA recognising that it needs to be policed better.

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It comes following suggestions that a loophole in the cost cap regulations has allowed teams to move employees to projects away from the pinnacle of motorsport, so that they aren’t included in the budget cap.

The concern is that those who have been moved to another project could still learn things which would benefit the F1 team, giving the outfit an unfair advantage.

Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer has actually raised this before, with the Romanian-American being concerned that some of the leading teams have discovered a loophole in the regulations.

Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari all have sizeable operations in other sports, with Mercedes’ having perhaps caught the most attention.

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Mercedes recently brought James Allison back into the F1 team, after he’d been busy working for INEOS for the America’s Cup.

Red Bull are also involved in the America’s Cup, whilst they also boast a significant presence in the world of bicycle design.

Ferrari, of course, famously claimed their first overall win of the Le Mans 24 hours in 58 years recently, with their GT and racing divisions working alongside each other.

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The FIA have finally decided to get a proper understanding of what these teams are doing, given that the mentioned operations fall outside the F1 budget cap, yet could arguably still benefit their performance.

Aston Martin are also set to be investigated, with them having previously made a procedural breach of the budget cap.

What the FIA will discover is certainly set to be fascinating; however, Red Bull in particular will be very keen to avoid another budget cap-related penalty.