The Formula 1 teams are preparing for the announcement that the FIA will make about which teams were within the cost limit and which exceeded the figure set in the regulations. During the weekend of the Singapore Grand Prix, there was speculation that one team had been slightly overspending, while another vastly exceeded the required number.
Aston Martin and Red Bull were the names that circulated through the paddock, even some teams insinuate that it was those teams that broke the regulations, but both played down these rumors, since they insisted that the international federation had not informed them of no problem.
The rivals are very interested in the result of the documents, especially in knowing the degree of seriousness with which the governing body will take any type of violation of the regulations.
Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto admitted it was not ideal for the 2021 championship fight to continue to be debated, but said the importance of staying within the budget cap should not be swept under the rug.
“It is a pity that we are talking about it in October of the following year, because at this moment, in addition to the implications in the World Cup last season, it also affects now,” he told Sky Italia .
“Let’s wait until Wednesday before passing judgment, but whatever amount we’re talking about, it’s important to understand that even if it’s four million, which falls into the category of what’s considered a minor infraction, four million doesn’t They are minors,” he continued. “For us, four million represents the development pieces of a whole season, it is 70 people in a technical department who can come up with and produce solutions that could be worth up to half a second per lap.”
“So, although we are facing something considered a minor infraction, they are not peanuts,” said the head of the most successful team in the history of Formula 1.
“We’re talking about half a second, and that advantage carries over to subsequent years, because if it started in 2021, it still gives a competitive advantage in 2022 and 2023, so it’s clearly a big deal,” Binotto explained. “It puts credibility at stake, I hope everybody has approached that exercise correctly, because otherwise it’s going to be a very big problem to manage.”
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff echoed Ferrari’s view on the importance of upgrades, as he felt any extra spending has a direct impact by allowing teams to put in much more performance. The Austrian said detailed analysis of the Silver Arrows had made rivals’ car development programs suggest someone had been spending more.
“Is this an alleged minor infraction, because I think the word is not correct?” he said. “If you spend five million more, and you’re still in a smaller gap, it still has a big impact on the championship.”
“To give you an idea, we are closely monitoring which parts the leading teams bring to the track in each race, for the 2021 and 2022 season,” Wolff continued. “We can see that there are two teams at the top that are about the same, and there is another one that spends more.”
“We know what we spend, three and a half million a year on parts that we contribute to the car, so you can see the difference that spending another 500,000 dollars [507,000 euros to change] would make a difference,” said the director of Mercedes.
“We haven’t produced light parts for the car in order to lower the weight because we don’t have the money, so we have to do it for next year,” he said. “We can’t homologate a lighter chassis and bring it in, because it’s two million more that we’ll be over the limit, so you can see that every bit of spending has a performance advantage.”
Any team deemed above will likely face a separate cost cap hearing to decide what penalties they may face.
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