Amid swirling speculations regarding potential cost cap infringements in the Hungarian Grand Prix paddock, the International Automobile Federation (FIA) has firmly stated that no teams have been found in breach of limits. The governing body has decisively dismissed these speculations.
Ahead of the weekend, Formula 1’s CEO, Stefano Domenicali, had voiced his keenness to wrap up the investigations as soon as possible as a means to quell the rampant speculations.
“Oversight rests with the FIA,” he clarified to F1 Flow.com. “On my end, I’ve requested the earliest possible release of the FIA staff’s investigations.
“I say this simply to prevent unnecessary conjecture and remarks that are beneficial to no one.”
However, the FIA, instead of hastening the process and risking potential errors, seems to be intensifying efforts to ensure comprehensive enforcement of the cost cap. This might necessitate more time to review each team’s submissions meticulously.
In a recent statement, the FIA confirmed that the review of 2022 submissions is ongoing and will be concluded in a manner that the governing body deems best, even if it demands additional time.
“The auditing groundwork is still underway and will end in the following weeks. Then, a certain period will be necessary to finalize the review,” the statement read.
Photo by: Red Bull Racing
Fears of potential cost cap violations are escalating in the F1 paddock
“No specific certification deadline has ever been, or is, in place, and any insinuations of process delays or potential infringements are entirely baseless.
“The Cost Cap Administration will formally share its findings following the procedure outlined in the Financial Regulations. The timeline is intentionally left flexible so as not to compromise the thoroughness and efficacy of the review.”
As part of the continuous review, several teams were asked last week to provide additional information regarding their cost cap expenditure.
Rather than viewing the FIA’s further inquiries as alarming, Toto Wolff, the Mercedes team principal, considers it a positive sign as it highlights the seriousness of the FIA’s investigation.
“The fact that they’ve returned with a slew of questions for many teams is a testament to the rigor of the process,” stated Wolff.
“It’s beneficial for F1 to have competent auditors. It is crucial to put an end to any unintentional or intentional breaches of the cost cap, similar to technical and sporting regulations.”
When asked about concerns over Mercedes potentially breaching the cost cap amidst the additional questions, Wolff assured, “Our audit concluded a few months ago. Since then, we haven’t had any hint of falling short in any area, as far as we comprehend.”
Concerning the cost cap, Domenicali emphasized that the FIA should lean towards sporting penalties instead of financial sanctions for any team found to have breached the cost cap.
“In the event of an infringement, I prefer a sporting penalty. It’s something we’ve strongly advocated,” he remarked.
“Three regulations must be observed: sporting, technical, and financial. Any infractions must be dealt with by imposing sporting sanctions. We cannot deviate from this course.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about F1 cost cap investigation
What is the FIA’s stance on the rumored cost cap breaches?
The FIA has denied rumors that any teams have been found in breach of the cost cap limits, dismissing such speculations.
Has the FIA set a deadline for the cost cap investigation?
No, the FIA has not set a specific deadline for the cost cap investigation. The timeline is intentionally left flexible to ensure the robustness and effectiveness of the review.
What is F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali’s view on the investigation?
F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has expressed his eagerness for the investigation’s completion to prevent unnecessary speculation and remarks. However, he acknowledges that control is in the FIA’s hands.
Has Mercedes potentially breached the cost cap?
Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff, assured that there’s no indication of any breach on their part. Their audit concluded a few months ago without revealing any shortcomings.
What type of penalties does Domenicali prefer for cost cap breaches?
Domenicali prefers sporting penalties over financial sanctions for any team found to have breached the cost cap, believing it is important to respect sporting, technical, and financial regulations.