Exceeding the budget ceiling allegedly carried out by Red Bull and Aston Martin F1 raises the problem of sanctions possibly arriving several months after the end of the season concerned.
By extrapolating as much as possible, one could imagine that a drivers or constructors title could be lost, one day, ten months after its attribution. The teams report in full in March, but the FIA’s review process pushes back the report to October.
For Laurent Mekies, it is difficult to avoid this kind of consequences with the way the rules are written. However, Ferrari’s sporting director is more concerned about the effect these rules have on the future than on the past.
« This is uncharted territory at the moment. There is clear governance that is written by the FIA on how they will handle this and there will be a panel that will have to decide the answer to your question. « said the Frenchman.
« I think we know that’s one of the downsides to these regulations, but as we see it, we also know there are more pros and cons to these regulations. And maybe that there is also an even more important question: what advantage do you carry over to the following championships?
« That’s probably the first question we want to answer. So if there was a breach in 2021, what benefit carries over into 2022? And into 2023? Then you can discuss the timing of the sanction and how to make it meaningful. »
Vasseur and Steiner want to punish the consequences
Frédéric Vasseur, the director of Alfa Romeo F1, agrees with his compatriot’s point of view: « I have nothing to add. In the end, it is true that the advantage you get in 2021 or 2022, you will carry over to the following years. »
« And as Laurent said, it’s the other side of the coin because the financial inspection comes a year later. But we have to deal with it because I think, once again, that the financial regulation was the big progress of the past ten years.
Günther Steiner thinks that the most important thing is to differentiate the effects caused by these overruns: « First of all we have to find out what it was and then there will be a penalty. They will decide if it created an advantage for the future. I think that is the most important question, in my opinion. opinion. And then there should be penalties for the past, for the future, forever. »
On the side of Williams F1, Jost Capito prefers to remain cautious: « I think it’s a question for the FIA. I think we have to wait until we have the final review and we don’t know if someone has breached the cost cap or not. Until we know, I don’t think it’s worth discussing penalties. »
Seidl: You have to « accept » this delay
For McLaren F1 director Andreas Seidl, the risk of seeing a championship played out on green carpet several months after its conclusion is a necessary evil to have a budget cap in Formula 1.
« I guess we have to accept that with the financial regulations in place, and it’s not just specific to Formula 1, there will always be a financial result from a team that comes much later than the actual result from the last race of the championship. »
« I think we were all aware of that going into this new era of Formula 1. And ultimately it’s up to us, the teams, to make sure we don’t go over the top. Ultimately, the Financial Regulations are now as important as the sporting and technical regulations. »
« There is no difference. It is very important that the FIA ensures that it monitors them correctly, applies them and puts in place appropriate sanctions in the event of a breach, even if it affects the results of the championship. in the past. »
One of the principals concerned by this affair, Christian Horner, is not surprised that the results appear so late. The director of Red Bull recalls the colossal task that this represents, as well as the youth of this regulation.
« It’s a huge subject and task for the FIA, the different accounting structures of different teams, the different constructions and properties of teams. There’s a huge amount of things that they’ve had to try to get up to speed with. »
« And of course in this first year there will inevitably be a lot of lessons to be learned, both for the FIA and inevitably for the teams. So hopefully in the years to come this process can be considered. as significantly faster, bearing in mind that submissions were made in March for 2021. »