Do You remember when Christian Horner threatened rival teams who claimed Red Bull breached the budget with a defamation case? It was during the Singapore Grand Prix when the champion team, Red Bull, was alleged for breaching the 2021 cost cap. It was when Horner denied all those accusations and claimed to have done nothing wrong.
For the rival teams who were speaking against Red Bull and claiming it to commit cheating, Horner got offended. He even threatened to put a defamation case against rival teams, as it ruined the racing company\’s reputation. And now, when FIA proved the team to have done breaching in real, the team is still denying it. Though the team pledged to cooperate with the governing body. Horner is still not accepting any guilt. Instead, he wants apologies from the other teams for the \”cheating\” allegations bombarded on them.
Meanwhile, FIA has finally released the penalty decided for the guilty team. For breaching the $145M cost cap by a \’minor\’ amount of approx $2M, Red has been fined $7M. Plus, the team will face a 10% reduction in its aerodynamic testing allowance for the next 12 months in Formula One.
FIA sent an acceptance agreement letter to the Red Bull team. And somehow, the team acknowledged it. But! Only for breaking the sport\’s financial regulations, not for breaching the budget intentionally. That is the reason why Red Bull accepted the penalty.
Many, including Mercedes, Ferrari, and McLaren, demanded strict sanctions from FIA against Red Bull. However, it was found in the investigation that the verdict\’s account submissions didn\’t include a tax credit. As a result, it reduced the amount of breaching the cost cap by only 0.37% of the total budget. Therefore, the rule break was too minor for FIA to give strict punishments or execute Max Verstappen\’s world title.
The Other Formula One Teams Treated Red Bull Very Badly, Believes Christian Horner
Christian Horner is expecting apologies for how other teams treated Red Bull. According to him, the rival teams undoubtedly treated Red Bull as if it had committed cheating. McLaren\’s principal, Zak Brown, even wrote a letter to the FIA president recommending significant punishment for Red Bull. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff also claimed that by breaching the budget, Max Verstappen got an advantage in securing his first championship. And Ferrari\’s chief, Mattia Binotto, believed that a team could hire engineers with that amount, and the saga went on getting intense.
After the prolonged cost cap fiasco of Red Bull, the story finally ended. And it went in favor of the guilty team. However, when Christian Horner was asked if he wanted to apologize for breaching the budget even by a minor amount, he said, No!
On the contrary, Horner pointed out, \”To be honest, I think we\’re probably due an apology from some of our rivals for some of the claims they have made.\” The Constructor\’s champion team, Red Bull, did not apologize for how they have performed. They claimed to have learned lessons from the mistake they made during the submission last year and also from whatever they faced during the 2022 formula One season.
In addition, Horner believes that accepting the ABA (Accepting Breaching Agreement) otherwise, it would take months, and the matter would remain unsolved.