Fernando Alonso likens Red Bull scandal to 2019 Ferrari controversy

Fernando Alonso doesn't think Red Bull should receive a major punishment for breaking the 2021 budget cap, but added they must've exploited 'grey areas' in the F1 regulations


Alpine driver Fernando Alonso has rubbished calls for Red Bull to be disqualified from the 2021 Formula 1 World Championships, arguing the same rules didn’t apply for Ferrari’s suspected illegal engine in 2019.

Red Bull have been found guilty of a ‘minor’ budget cap breach – less than $7.25 million – while in 2019 Ferrari reached a secret agreement with the FIA following an investigation into their fuel-flow system that avoided any significant punishments.

“It’s difficult to know without having all the info,” Alonso told the media regarding Red Bull, ahead of the 2022 US Grand Prix.

“Ferrari won two races in 2019 I think, with something that we all know was not legal and nothing happened, they kept those wins, so it’s quite a maze.”

Alonso himself drove for Ferrari for five seasons and came close to securing two world titles but was beaten twice by Sebastian Vettel, who was Ferrari’s lead driver in 2019.

Pushed on whether there should be a different set of circumstances regarding race wins compared to championships.

“Imagine they won the championship in 2019 with that engine,” Alonso continued. “It is very difficult and I think we need to rely on the people that have the power and trust them.”

Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari and Max Verstappen of Red Bull during the 2019 Chinese Grand Prix | Charles Coates/Getty Images

Legitimate grey areas?

However, Alonso didn’t completely exonerate Red Bull. Instead, the Alpine driver congratulated them on exploiting the ambiguities within the financial regulations.

“Well they’re world champions, they pushed the grey areas,” Alonso said.

“I don’t remember many years where a team that won the championship wasn’t exploiting something that other teams were surprised at.

“So from Brawn GP to Red Bull 2012, I don’t remember Mercedes but to have a domination like they did, for sure the team was learning things that they thought at the beginning weren’t possible.”

Pushed on whether financial regulations can have any grey areas, he gave a typical Alonso response: “I don’t know, I’m just a driver.”

Adam Dickinson
Adam Dickinson
An international multi-award-winning journalist, Adam Dickinson has written for Total-Motorsport.com since June 2022 and also contributes to TNT Sports, Eurosport and the Rugby Paper. He's also had articles published in the Daily Telegraph and several local newspapers, previously worked for Last-Lap.co.uk and FeederSeries.net in motorsport, and graduated with a First-Class Journalism Degree from the University of Sheffield having also studied in Oklahoma. Adam started watching F1 by accident in 2007, catching the last race in Indianapolis, and attended his first race as a journalist at the 2023 British Grand Prix.
- Advertisment -


Max Verstappen in the F1 paddock ahead of the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Chris Graythen / Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Mercedes chairman flirts with Max Verstappen: He’d look good in silver

One of the most important figures within Mercedes AMG, Ola Kallenius, has declared Max Verstappen “would look good in...
Carlos Sainz during practice for the 2024 Spanish GP | Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

Carlos Sainz hits out at Lewis Hamilton over unpunished Spanish GP move

Carlos Sainz believes Lewis Hamilton should've been given a penalty for his overtaking move that forced the Ferrari driver...
Max Verstappen during 2024 Spanish GP Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen warning to Red Bull and demands improvement

Max Verstappen demands Red Bull improvement as another tough race saw the reigning world champion have to really work...
Start of the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

LIVE F1 Spanish Grand Prix 2024 – Reaction as McLaren mistakes costly as Verstappen...

Welcome to Total-Motorsport’s F1 live coverage of the Spanish GP 2024. Held at the iconic Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, today’s race...
Lewis Hamilton during 2024 Spanish GP weekend | Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton brushes off furious Sainz after Spanish GP incident

Lewis Hamilton risked angering Carlos Sainz after claiming the Ferrari driver "left the door open" to overtake him during...
Lando Norris of McLaren after the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Lando Norris: McLaren easily had the best car at Spanish GP

Lando Norris believes Spanish GP victory should have been his as McLaren had the best car in Barcelona, but...
Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner at the 2024 Monaco Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Christian Horner warns of Norris danger to Verstappen after Spanish GP battle

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner warned that Lando Norris and McLaren are their strongest competitors following a nail-biting...
McLaren team principal Andrea Stella at the 2023 Belgian GP | McLaren F1 team

McLaren chief pinpoints where 2024 Spanish GP was lost

McLaren's team boss they lost the 2024 Spanish GP by Turn 1 as a poor start saw Lando Norris...
Max Verstappen, Lando Norris and Lewis Hamilton on the podium after the 2024 Spanish GP | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 Standings after 2024 Spanish Grand Prix

Max Verstappen showcased his racing prowess at the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix, clinching his seventh victory of the Formula...
Lando Norris during the 2024 Spanish GP weekend | McLaren

F1 Fastest Lap: Spanish GP 2024

The Spanish GP Fastest Lap award is given to the driver who posts the quickest time over one timed...
- Advertisment -