Red Bull are likely to face a penalty after being found guilty of breaching F1’s budget cap rules.
Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez have been booed on stage as Red Bull’s budget cap fiasco continues. The pair were heckled by supporters when taking part in an interview in a fan zone ahead of qualifying for the United States Grand Prix.
One or two spectators began booing as the Red Bull drivers were introduced to the audience, but seconds later the rest of the crowd joined in. The fans could be heard chanting “cheaters, cheaters” at the two stars.
The incident comes after team boss Christian Horner warned of the damage that had been done to the team’s drivers since the saga began. Speaking at the press conference, Horner said: “We’ve been on trial because of public accusations since Singapore.
“The rhetoric of cheats, the rhetoric that we have had this enormous benefit. The numbers that have been put in the media are miles out of reality. The damage that does to the brand, to our partners, to our drivers, to our workforce in an age where mental health is prevalent.”
Max Verstappen was booed by fans at the United States Grand Prix
The FIA are yet to decide upon a punishment for Red Bull after it emerged they had broken F1 budget cap rules. The team have entered an ‘Accepted Breach Agreement’ but no penalty has yet been declared.
Horner has met with FIA President Mohammed ben Sulayem and F1 chief Stefano Domenicali ahead of the weekend. Red Bull were expected to only receive a minor punishment after breaching the cap by less than five per cent.
However, many rival teams are pushing for severe sanctions to set an example and to prevent other incidents of wrongdoing.
Christian Horner said the claims had done ‘damage’ to Red Bull
Many social media users have even called on Max Verstappen to be stripped of his 2021 title since the breach has come to light. This is unlikely as Red Bull did not go above the five per cent threshold which constitutes a minor overspend.
But, several drivers and team bosses have suggested Verstappen should be protected from the punishment despite possibly benefiting. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has even defended the Dutchman, admitting it was not realistic to go back and change previous results.
He told La Gazzetta dello Sport: “The FIA must make the right choice and the penalty must reflect the violation. I don’t think you can go back to the 2021 world title [for Verstappen] because with a smaller violation that is, according to the rules, not realistic. But it should be fairer and clearer in the future.”