Horner believes Red Bull won’t breach 2022 F1 cost cap

Christian Horner believes an absence of one-off items that had an impact in 2021 will help Red Bull stay under the 2022 Formula 1 cost cap.

Horner believes Red Bull won’t breach 2022 F1 cost cap

However, he admits he can’t say with “100% confidence” that Red Bull will be safe – and suggests that six teams are still at risk of breaching the 2022 cap limit.

The FIA announced on Friday that Red Bull has been fined $7m and hit with a 10% reduction in aero testing for the next 12 months after being found guilty of exceeding last year's budget cap.

The fact that debate over the disputed 2021 items intensified in the past few weeks – with the 2022 season nearly over – has inevitably provoked speculation that it may be too late for the team to change its approach and stay under this year’s cap.

However, Horner says that many of the issues related to the team’s 2021 spend won’t be factors in the 2022 accounts.

"The effects that we've had this year, the material effect that they carry over into 2022, a lot of these costs are one-off costs,” he said when asked by Autosport about this year’s spending.

“Whether it was a redundancy cost, leaver costs, sick pay, they are one-off costs. We will continue to feed our people, and their costs will be apportioned within the cap.”

Christian Horner, Team Principal, Red Bull Racing, in a press conference regarding the recent findings of the cost cap breach. The FIA have handed Red Bull a $7m fine and an aero testing reduction

Christian Horner, Team Principal, Red Bull Racing, in a press conference regarding the recent findings of the cost cap breach. The FIA have handed Red Bull a $7m fine and an aero testing reduction

Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images

Horner insisted that he believes rival teams have spent more in key areas such as development and crash damage.

“If I look at the 2022 rate of development, I think that other teams have put significantly more components on the car than us this year.

“If you look at crash damage alone, which again, is hugely expensive, and something I think that needs personally looking at within the cap - when you look at the quantum of some of the crashes this year, some of which are not the fault of your driver or your team, Max Verstappen is the driver that has incurred the least amount of damage this year. In terms of parts used, again, we are at the lower end.

“So one can never say with 100% confidence that we're comfortably within the cap, particularly after the process that we've just been through.

“But we feel that there are a lot of one-off costs that have been included within this. And we are confident and hopeful that with the process of these regulations being tidied up for the future, it will become less of an accounting world championship.”

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Asked about likely penalties for future breaches by teams, Horner suggested that several of his rivals could go over the limit this year.

"I think what we have set is a precedent," he said. "And it sets a precedent for 2022. And a danger for 2022 is that there could be six teams in breach of the cap. Energy prices have been exponential, but thankfully we've been protected from that.

“But there is that chance that several teams, many of which have stated it during F1 commission meetings, will break the cap this year.

“We do not believe that we will break the cap in 2022, for the reasons I explained earlier. But these penalties set precedent for the future. So if you get 10% for 0.37% breach, what is the 5% breach going to be?”

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