The governing body of Formula 1, the FIA, has reportedly called reports that up to three teams are in violation of the 2022 cost cap as false according to Sky F1 reporter Craig Slater.
Recent reports regarding the upcoming certificates of compliance with the 2022 cost cap have surfaced, and they indicate that up to three teams may not get the go-ahead.
Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has also been advocating for sporting sanctions to be imposed on any future cost cap violators. He cited Red Bull’s 10% reduction in wind tunnel time from last year’s auditing procedure as an example.
Domenicali additionally expressed on several occasions his desire for the FIA to complete the cost cap auditing procedure faster in the not too distant future since it dragged on until October last year, the first season the process was officially conducted.
Slater further claimed that the FIA had notified him that the 2022 cost cap analysis process was still underway and that any claims of infractions were greatly exaggerated.
“This has blown up in the last few days,” said Slater. “Motorsport Italy and also Auto Motor und Sport in Germany, slightly different reports in both case.”
“The Italian publication saying that three teams are in breach of the cost cap, Auto Motor und Sport in Germany talking about two teams being in breach.
“Now, I’ve contacted the FIA about this. They are quite adamant in their response to me, and I only referenced initially the Italian reports because the German report came out a little bit later, they’ve said the reports are factually wrong.
“They say that the auditing process is still ongoing with regard to the cost cap and it is only scheduled to conclude in the coming weeks.
“After which there’ll be a period required for assessment and finalisation of review and they’re saying there is no deadline submitted to the teams for them to gain certification for the cost cap.
“The FIA are telling me that any suggestion of delay to the process because of more in-depth investigations this year,” he added. “These reports carry stories of the FIA going in and investigating whether some of the teams are using other projects to mask development on an F1 car as well.
“The FIA are telling me there’s no delay because of that and also saying that talk of potential breaches at this stage are unfounded. So that’s the position of the governing body.”
Slater asserted that he directly contacted teams to inquire about their confidence in their ability to adhere to the 2022 cost cap. Of those who responded—including most of the front-runners—all expressed confidence that no breach will be detected.
“I’ve tried to go around all of the teams and ask them, ‘Are you confident that you are compliant for the cost cap for 2022?'” Slater continued.
“All of the teams who have responded to me, and that includes most of the leading teams I have to say, have all said to me, ‘Yes, we believe we are inside it’.
“So we’ll have to watch this space to see if what happens over the next weeks does throw up a team or two who have breached the cost cap.
“And one or two of them are explaining to me that the inflationary aspect to economics of the past year or so is making it more difficult, but they are all reflecting that it is the same for everyone.
“But the FIA are telling me no-one in breach at the moment and it’s quite unfounded to suggest as much.”
Red Bull, the only team to remain undefeated in Formula One in 2023 after winning all 10 Grands Prix to date, is currently perfecting the art of pushing through their cost cap penalty.