FIA respond to Ferrari boss’ demand, call for ‘clean’ title battle

Ferrari, Red Bull and Mercedes are all set to bring significant upgrades to their cars at the 2022 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has called on the FIA to keep a close eye on the teams’ spending as they place more upgrades on their cars.

Ferrari are expected to introduce a chassis upgrade to the 2022 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Imola that they hope will lose them 3kg as they fight, along with many others on the grid, to shed weight.

Many things changed between 2021 and 2022; the cars are bigger and heavier than before due to the new technical regulations which have seen the return of ground effect aerodynamics.

READ: ‘Completely wrong’: Binotto fires back at claim Ferrari had unfair advantage on 2022 car

The weight limit on the cars was therefore raised to 795kg, and the budget cap was lowered by $5 million to $140 million.

The teams are essentially fighting against both to try and get their weight down without eating into their budget, which could be crucial for Ferrari and Red Bull when they get towards the latter stages of this year’s championship.

The Scuderia are planning a slight chassis change in which they will perhaps get to the bottom of the “porpoising” problem, but this will have to wait until the Spanish Grand Prix.

The plan is to raise the ride height of the car, but avid readers may remember that this is something Mercedes also tried, encountering an abundance of handling issues through the corners as a consequence.

Ferrari will try and implement this update without adversely affecting their aerodynamic proficiency, and it should therefore eradicate the bouncing suffered particularly by Carlos Sainz in Saudi Arabia, while also retaining the performance that has served them so well in the first two rounds of the season.

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As updates begin to come thick and fast the closer we get to the European season, Binotto suggests that there should be a system in place that ensures financial compliance under the more stringent budget cap.

“The competition front shifts from now onwards: when you have two cars as similar in performance as Ferrari and Red Bull, each package will weigh because a tenth or two will make a difference at this point in the season,” said Binotto.

“There is a cap budget on which we are limited and I am insisting every day with the FIA for them to carry out the checks, because if these do not happen we risk to somehow offset the final result.”

FIA head of single-seater technical matters, Nikolas Tombazis, responded by ensuring the Italian that the motorsport governing body intends to ensure a fair championship fight.

“Our first objective is to ensure that the championship is clean, we want those who deserve it to win,” he said.

“Today’s regulations require much more control resources: now we have to inspect what teams do at home as well. 

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“But for financial controls we have a capable team led by colleague Federico Lodi. Mattia can rest assured, we are doing everything to keep the situation under control. 

“We have tax experts who check the balance sheets and the parts that are mounted on the machines to make sure we are billed correctly.”

Ferrari lead Red Bull by 41 points in the Constructors’ Championship, with Mercedes sandwiched inbetween them.

All three teams are expected to bring key upgrades to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in a little over two weeks’ time.