Horner: Red Bull victims of own success

The FIA has finally released its report into Red Bull's breach of the 2021 budget cap.


Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has said that the team accepted a $7 million penalty and reduced wind tunnel time for next season to “close the book” on speculation about its breach of the 2021 cost cap.

The FIA announced that the Milton Keynes-based outfit had agreed to an Accepted Breach Agreement after it was found to have exceeded its allocated budget for the 2021 season.

Speculation has been rife about the exact size of any overspend by Red Bull given the close-fought 2021 title battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton which the Dutchman won by the narrowest of margins in Abu Dhabi.

The FIA have now confirmed that the overspend fell into the “minor” infringement category of less than 5% over the limit, and Horner said that the team had accepted the punishment “begrudgingly” to put an end to speculation from other parties.

“Why have we accepted it? Had we dragged it out through the administration process, that could have taken months and beyond that the ICA could have taken further months. We could have been looking at a 12-month period to have this closed,” Horner told media ahead of the Mexican GP.

“And the amount of speculation and sniping that has been going on, we felt it was in everyone’s interests to close the book. We accept the penalties – begrudgingly, but we accept them.”

AUSTIN, TEXAS – OCTOBER 23: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB18 on track during the F1 Grand Prix of USA at Circuit of The Americas on October 23, 2022 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202210230646 // Usage for editorial use only //

Draconian penalty

Horner added that while the financial penalty handed out to the team of $7 million represented a significant hit, the restriction on wind tunnel usage for next season represented the harsher punishment given its impact on lap time.

“$7m is an enormous amount of money and the more draconian part is the sporting penalty which is a 10% reduction in our ability to use our wind tunnel and aerodynamic tools. That represents between 0.25secs and 0.5secs of lap time,” he said.

“By winning the constructors’ championship, we become victims of our own success by having a 5% incremental handicap compared to second and third places, so we will have 15% less than seconds and 20% less than third, that will have impact on our ability to perform on track.”

John Smith
John Smithhttps://total-motorsport.com
Editor at Total-Motorsport.com and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
- Advertisment -


Alex Bowman celebrates victory at the 2024 Chicago Street Race | NASCAR

How rain strategy helped Alex Bowman end his drought in Chicago

Alex Bowman and his job with Hendrick Motorsports was never really in question as his contract runs through the...
Lewis Hamilton, Lando Norris and Max Verstappen 1 at the 2024 British GP | Mercedes

F1 Driver Ratings — 2024 British GP

Lewis Hamilton finally ended his long wait for a race victory at the Formula 1 2024 British GP as...
George Russell leads the field into Turn 1 at the 2024 British GP | Mercedes

F1 Winners and Losers from the British GP

Lewis Hamilton emerged victorious in one of the most memorable races in recent Formula 1 history, which begs the...
Lewis Hamilton celebrates after winning the 2024 British GP | Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton masterclass proves he can take fight to Verstappen

Lewis Hamilton basked in the glory of his long-awaited victory at the British Grand Prix, celebrating in front of...
Max Verstappen looks on at the 2024 Austrian GP | Chris Graythen / Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen rues ‘poor’ British GP as Red Bull battle rare issue

Max Verstappen conceded it was a "poor afternoon" for Red Bull at the Formula 1 2024 British Grand Prix...
Lando Norris with engineers at 2024 British GP | McLaren F1 Team

Are McLaren becoming ‘new Ferrari’ after another strategy blunder?

Lando Norris' media appearances after the British GP were a genuinely tough watch, with reporters seemingly counselling the 24-year-old...
Race winner Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes Max Verstappen on the podium after the 2024 British Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Lewis Hamilton: British GP win more crucial to Mercedes than Russell victory

Lewis Hamilton explained why he felt his victory at the Formula 1 2024 British Grand Prix on Sunday was...
Carlos Sainz at the 2024 Austrian GP | Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

F1 2024 British GP – Fastest Lap

Carlos Sainz snatched the fastest lap at the 2024 British GP at the final opportunity as an all-time classic...
Lando Norris during 2024 British GP | McLaren F1 Team

F1 Standings after 2024 British Grand Prix

An emotional 2024 British Grand Prix saw Lewis Hamilton take a record-breaking win at Silverstone, outsmarting Lando Norris and...
Max Verstappen leads Lando Norris of McLaren during the 2024 British Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 2024 British GP: Driver of the Day

There is a reason why the British Grand Prix remains the hottest attraction on the Formula 1 calendar and...
- Advertisment -