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Formula 1

‘Facts will come out, people will understand’ – Red Bull speaks

by Ben Anderson
2 min read

Red Bull drivers Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen believe their team is “in line” with Formula 1’s first cost cap and Perez says rivals are trying to destabilise them because they are winning.

The FIA released a statement on the Monday after October’s Japanese Grand Prix confirming suspicions Red Bull was the only team to breach F1’s inaugural cost cap in 2021, and is now understood to have offered Red Bull terms on an ‘accepted breach agreement’ – whereby Red Bull admits wrongdoing now but takes a lesser penalty than if it decides to fight the FIA’s verdict.

Accepting such a proposal would allow Red Bull to avoid a points deduction or a reduction in its future budget cap, and escape with any combination of reprimand, suspension from a practice/qualifying session and aerodynamic testing restrictions.

Speaking to media for the first time since the FIA confirmed it thinks Red Bull breached the cost cap, Perez and Verstappen both reiterated the team’s belief it has done nothing wrong.

“We believe we are in line [with the cost cap],” said Perez. “We believe everything will come up in the right situation.

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“There’s always teams that want to take performance out of you – especially when you are winning. It’s part of the sport and this has been forever. It’s just a normal situation.

“At the end of the day facts will come out and people will see and understand the situation.”

McLaren boss Zak Brown wrote to the FIA and F1 management two days after the breach was confirmed, saying any overspend by Red Bull would “constitute cheating” and calling for tough sanctions.

Verstappen, who narrowly beat Lewis Hamilton to last year’s drivers’ championship, said of the FIA’s revelation that Red Bull “knew it was coming” but “from our side we really believe that we are right”.

“It’s something between the team and the FIA,” he added. “From our side, we have a strong belief that we were in it [within the cost cap] so that’s why of course we are discussing with them about it to show what we think is right.

“But at the end of the day it’s not up to me, I’ll just focus on the performance on track.”

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