Max Verstappen could lose his 2021 title over Red Bull’s cost cap breach with Lewis Hamilton the man who stands to benefit.

Max Verstappen has been told ‘things will get worse’ by former Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone after Red Bull’s budget cap breach in 2021. The Dutchman is still waiting to find out what penalty his team will receive for breaking the financial rules, with the 91-year-old’s comments offering Lewis Hamilton hope that he could yet claim a record-breaking eighth Formula One crown.

Max Verstappen

Most of the talk surrounding the sport in recent weeks has been about Red Bull’s breach of the financial regulations – something which was confirmed by the FIA on Monday following a lengthy investigation. The team’s breach is considered ‘minor’, meaning they went over the £114million cap by less than 5%, with £1.8m the figure that has been rumoured by those within F1.

The FIA have a range of sporting punishments at its disposal, from from a public reprimand to disqualification. Points penalties, fines and reduced development time in the years to come are also possibilities as the sports governing body ponders how to penalise Verstappen’s team.

Given the 25-year-old only beat Hamilton to the title by eight points in 2021 hopes had been raised that the Brit could claim his eighth championship, with only a small points penalty needed to see the title move to the Mercedes garage instead.

However, as the breach was considered to be ‘minor’ it is widely expected that the FIA will stop short of giving out points penalties – instead focusing on reprimands, fines and reduced development time and cost cap in future seasons.

Max Verstappen has been told ‘things will get worse’ by former Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone after Red Bull’s budget cap breach in 2021. The Dutchman is still waiting to find out what penalty his team will receive for breaking the financial rules, with the 91-year-old’s comments offering Lewis Hamilton hope that he could yet claim a record-breaking eighth Formula One crown.

Most of the talk surrounding the sport in recent weeks has been about Red Bull’s breach of the financial regulations – something which was confirmed by the FIA on Monday following a lengthy investigation. The team’s breach is considered ‘minor’, meaning they went over the £114million cap by less than 5%, with £1.8m the figure that has been rumoured by those within F1.

The FIA have a range of sporting punishments at its disposal, from from a public reprimand to disqualification. Points penalties, fines and reduced development time in the years to come are also possibilities as the sports governing body ponders how to penalise Verstappen’s team.

Given the 25-year-old only beat Hamilton to the title by eight points in 2021 hopes had been raised that the Brit could claim his eighth championship, with only a small points penalty needed to see the title move to the Mercedes garage instead.

However, as the breach was considered to be ‘minor’ it is widely expected that the FIA will stop short of giving out points penalties – instead focusing on reprimands, fines and reduced development time and cost cap in future seasons.

Yet, this suggestion has been downplayed by former Formula One chief executive Bernie Ecclestone who has told Red Bull ‘things will get worse’ in an interview with German publication Blick. The business magnate sat at the very top of the sport for over 40 years so knows more than most about how punishments are handed out.

Ecclestone did not expand on what he meant by his comments but they suggest that more negative consequences could be coming Red Bull’s way. The Englishman is also known to be a close friend of Christian Horner so may already have advised the team chief to prepare for the worst, with Hamilton the obvious beneficiary.

The cost cap saga has added even more controversy to Verstappen’s maiden title after his win in the season-defining Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was only possible as a result of a botched Safety Car procedure by former race director Michael Masi. Many Hamilton supporters feel their man was robbed as a result and that belief will only intensify if Red Bull avoids a points penalty.

Only time will tell what penalty the FIA will give out for the drinks manufacturer’s overspending – but the controversy surrounding the issue is not likely to dissipate anytime soon.

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