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Formula 1Sport

FIA warns on F1 cost cap amid speculation of team breaches

french grand prix
Red Bull's Max Verstappen

Red Bull dismissed as speculation on Friday reports they spent more than allowed last year as Formula One’s governing FIA said it would deal with any breaches according to the rules.

According to media reports, Red Bull and Aston Martin exceeded the mandatory $145 million budget cap imposed on each of the 10 teams for 2021.

A Red Bull spokesperson described the reports at the Singapore Grand Prix as “purely speculation”.

An Aston Martin spokesperson said the team were “in discussion with the FIA, and we are awaiting certification (of the data).”

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won the 2021 championship after going into the last race level on points with Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton.

There was no official confirmation of any breach, or who might be involved, with the FIA saying in a statement it was still assessing the financial data submitted by teams.

“Alleged breaches of the financial regulations, if any, will be dealt with according to the formal process set out in the regulations,” it added.

Formula One introduced a $145 million cap last year, narrowing to $140 million this year and $135 million next season.

The aim is to rein in runaway spending by the biggest teams, level the playing field and put the sport on a more stable financial footing.

The rules provide a range of sanctions that can be applied based on the amount by which teams have exceeded the cap.

These include fines for minor offences, rising to a deduction of points from the drivers’ and teams’ standings, suspension and exclusion from the championship.

Williams were fined $25,000 this year for a procedural breach of the financial regulations after missing a deadline to submit their accounts.

Red Bull finished second behind Mercedes in the overall standings last season.

Verstappen could win his second title this weekend in Singapore.

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