Alpine and Aston Martin Budget Cap Rumors

Could both Alpine as well as Aston Martin be at risk of Budget Cap?

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There are rumors and suspicions surrounding the budget cap in Formula 1, with Aston Martin and Alpine potentially being at risk. As the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend continues, uncertainty looms over bad weather, the new qualifying format, and Red Bull's potential to equal McLaren's record of 11 consecutive wins since the season began. However, discussions within the paddock are increasingly centered around the budget cap.

The verdict on the 2022 season will be delivered in the coming weeks, and teams are starting to worry, considering what happened to Red Bull and Aston Martin last year. While concrete information is scarce, rumors have circulated that some teams have already received approval from the FIA regarding their spending limits. Most teams are believed to have adhered to the spending ceiling set at $141.2 million for the previous championship. However, there are suspicions that certain teams are being targeted by the FIA, although the federation has officially denied this and has requested additional investigations.

Last year, Aston Martin incurred only a minor infraction and received a small fine, while Red Bull faced a reduction in wind tunnel time and a $7 million fine. Other teams felt that these penalties were not severe enough. Stefano Domenicali, the head of Formula 1, has called for sporting penalties from the FIA that would impact the actual results of the championship, suggesting that this would be a more effective deterrent against future infringements.

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The teams under scrutiny vary according to rumors circulating in different countries. However, Alpine and Aston Martin are consistently mentioned as potential suspects. According to reports, there may be a third team under investigation, possibly either Red Bull or Mercedes, although this is speculative. The British press suggests that Mercedes is more at risk, while the German press predicts that the reigning champion team may face additional investigations. Red Bull, in particular, faces a double risk, as the FIA could impose stricter penalties for repeated offenses.

The range of possible penalties, including sporting ones, is extensive and can vary from reprimands to exclusion from the championship. The severity of the penalties will depend on the nature and extent of the potential infringements. A key threshold to consider is $7.06 million. Any violation below this amount would be considered a Minor Breach, while exceeding it would be classified as a Material Breach, leading to more severe sanctions. For reference, Red Bull's violation in 2021 was 1.6%. It is important to note that any penalties imposed in terms of points would affect the results of the previous season, not the ongoing one.

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