If Formula 1’s fanbase were in charge of the sport’s rules and regulations, then Red Bull would be facing a ban from upcoming races, with the vast majority wanting the FIA to change the budget cap rules.
The budget cap system was introduced in 2021, with each team being allowed to spend a certain amount throughout the season on their cars and their colleagues.
The budget cap also included areas such as catering, which is something that Red Bull reportedly overspent on in 2021.
It was deemed after the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix that the Austrian side had breached the $145 million cap by $2.2 million, something which resulted in a hefty fine for the Constructors’ Champions.
The FIA fined Red Bull $7 million and awarded them a 10-percent reduction in permitted aerodynamic research, meaning they’ll receive less wind tunnel time in 2023.
This will likely have an impact on Max Verstappen’s second consecutive title defence, as the Dutchman sets his sights on becoming a three-time World Champion next season.
Interestingly, a poll by Express Sport has discovered that 61.4-percent of their readers want the FIA to replace the fine for breaching the budget cap with a race ban, whilst the remaining voters want the punishment system to remain the same.
Many sides in the paddock have already asked for the budget cap to be changed going forward, given the rapid rise in costs across the globe due to inflation.
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has already warned the FIA that six teams could be at risk of having breached the cap this season, something which will likely be revealed towards the end of 2023.
Horner labelled the penalty that the FIA awarded them as “draconian”, with the Austrians having only breached the cap by 0.7-percent.
The Brit said during the year that the team “accept” the punishment, but that cries from the paddock that the punishment is “insignificant” are simply untrue.
“The amount of speculation, commenting and sniping that has been going on in the paddock, we felt that it was in everybody’s interest – our interest, the FIA’s interest, in F1’s interest – to say, ‘we close the book’, and we close the book here and today,” Horner said towards the end of the season.
“We accept the penalties, begrudgingly, but we accept them. The more draconian part is the sporting penalty, which is a 10 per cent reduction in our ability to utilise our wind tunnel and aerodynamic tools.
“I’ve heard people reporting today that it’s an insignificant amount. Let me tell you now, that is an enormous amount. That represents anywhere between a quarter and half a second of a lap.”