Formula One Chief Urges Sporting Sanctions for Budget Cap Breaches

Formula One Chief Stefano Domenicali has urged the FIA, the sport’s governing body, to impose sporting sanctions instead of financial penalties on teams that breach the 2022 budget cap. Domenicali’s call comes in response to the controversial $7 million fine and a 10% reduction in wind tunnel testing time handed to Red Bull in October 2021 for exceeding the 2021 budget cap by $1.8 million.

The penalty imposed on Red Bull was met with criticism from rival teams who believed it was insufficient. Ferrari boss Frederic Vasseur described it as “very light.” Red Bull, currently unbeaten in all 10 races this year, claims that the wind tunnel penalty will impact their development race later in the year.

The FIA is currently reviewing the financial submissions of all 10 teams for 2022 and aims to release its findings earlier than last year when Red Bull received penalties only after securing both the drivers’ and constructors’ titles. To enhance its auditing process, the FIA has doubled the size of its auditing team this year and will conduct a comprehensive investigation into the non-F1 operations and divisions of manufacturers and companies participating in the championship.

Domenicali, as the head of Formula One, has expressed his desire for severe penalties, such as points deductions or other impactful measures within the championship, to be imposed on teams that breach the budget cap. He emphasized that any infractions should be punished with sporting measures, as there are three regulations that must be respected: sporting, technical, and financial. Domenicali believes it is crucial to swiftly address any breaches to avoid speculation and unfavourable comments.

The previous year saw rumours of budget cap breaches circulating well before the FIA disclosed which teams had adhered to the limit. Red Bull team principal Christian Horner expressed frustration with how the process unfolded. Domenicali emphasizes the need for the FIA to exercise control and promptly publish the investigations conducted by their staff to prevent unwarranted speculation and detrimental comments.

In summary, Stefano Domenicali, the Formula One Chief, has called for sporting sanctions rather than financial penalties to be imposed on teams breaching the 2022 budget cap. The recent penalty imposed on Red Bull was met with criticism, prompting Domenicali to advocate for severe penalties such as points deductions. The FIA is working on auditing the financial submissions of all teams and plans to release the findings earlier than in previous years. Domenicali emphasizes the importance of swift action to avoid speculation and negative comments that may arise from delayed disclosures

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