FIA president warns teams against cover-ups after Red Bull cheating saga

Red Bull became the first team in Formula 1 history to breach the budget cap, resulting in a hefty public punishment.

FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem has warned Formula 1 teams against trying to “cover up” a breach of the budget cap, with the governing body being “there watching” exactly what the teams are doing.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has already explained that “six teams” could be at risk of having breached the budget cap last season, as inflation saw prices skyrocket across the globe.

It was Red Bull, of course, who became the first team in the history of F1 to breach the budget cap, something it was discovered last year that they had done in 2021.

The FIA deemed that the Austrians had breached the cap by $2.2 million, resulting in a fine of $7 million and a 10-percent reduction in permitted aerodynamic research for a year.

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Red Bull’s breach and resulting punishment was announced incredibly publicly by the FIA, meaning that an additional punishment that Red Bull had to deal with was the embarrassment of having spent over the limit.

Aston Martin were also told off for having breached the guidelines of the budget cap; however, their issue was to do with their filing.

The FIA were actually criticised for how long it took them to announce the results for the 2021 budget cap, given that it wasn’t announced until the day after the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix had taken place.

Ben Sulayem continues to believe that the FIA handled the situation well, with the teams knowing exactly who is “watching” them.

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“I was very clear with what happened with Red Bull and Aston Martin. We made sure that nothing was hidden, and we were very transparent,” Ben Sulayem told

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“We did the team [investigation], did the check-up, went through the whole process and we cleared it publicly to everyone.

“I hope nobody can use the cost cap and try to cover up things. The teams now are very clear that the FIA is there as the governing body. They are there watching, and that is our beauty, that is our responsibility.”

Ben Sulayem continues to standby the purpose of the budget cap, which is, of course, to allow the smaller teams to spend as much as the bigger teams.

“When it comes to the cost cap, there is one thing, it has to work,” he added.

“Yes, the gap is big, but we just have to push more into it to make sure the other teams come up to the level of the big teams.”