Ferrari team principal, Mattia Binotto, has been left wondering if Red Bull are complying with the financial regulations this season.
Charles Leclerc won two of the opening three races as Red Bull struggled to find their feet, suffering three reliability failures between Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez.
Leclerc led the Drivers’ Standings, while he and Carlos Sainz had given the Scuderia a healthy advantage in the Constructors’ Championship.
However, the Austrian side hit back in Imola with a highly effective upgrade that has seen them win nine of the last 11 races as of Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix.
Verstappen has given himself a 93-point lead over Perez in the drivers’ battle as a result, with Leclerc now a further five behind in third in the championship having won one race since Melbourne.
Leclerc and Sainz have lost bags full of points of late, due to reliability failures, strategic mishaps and the occasional driver error, but the Belgian Grand Prix seemed to be a different story entirely.
Partially owing to the tremendous straight-line speed of the Red Bull, Verstappen and Perez were miles clear of the Ferraris at Spa as they took their fourth one-two of the season.
The Dutchman won the race by a country mile having started 14th on the grid, and that was after setting a pole time – before his grid penalty was applied – that was six tenths of a second quicker than Sainz’s P2 time.
Binotto, naturally, has to find answers as to how his team are so far adrift of the pace of their rivals, and he lands upon a potential breach of the $145 million budget cap.
“I would be very surprised if that [rate of upgrades] was possible for other teams,” he said.
“You have to ask yourself whether the monitoring is sufficient. Unfortunately, only a few people at the FIA keep an eye on it.”
The Italian asked that the FIA keep a closer eye on the teams’ spending going forward.
“That has to improve for the future, it would be really bad if the championship is decided by the financial rules,” added Binotto.
Red Bull are now 118 points clear of Ferrari in the Constructors’ Standings, and the 2022 championship, with eight rounds to go, looks all but over for the Italian side.