Christian Horner speaks out on ‘deal’ as FIA table Red Bull proposals

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Christian Horner has denied Red Bull are involved in a secret deal with the FIA over their cost cap penalty. Rumours have suggested Red Bull were offered a 25 per cent reduction in wind tunnel time as part of their sanction. 

It comes after Red Bull entered an Accepted Breach Agreement (ABA) with the FIA in a bid to bring the matter to a close. It is believed Red Bull may have already been told their penalty but disagree with the outcome.

Horner was spotted in conversation with FIA President Mohammed ben Sulayem yesterday before FP2 and is understood to have spoken to F1 chief Stefano Domenicali on Thursday.

However, Horner has stressed the process would be “transparent” and denied any private pact. Speaking in the team principal press conference, Horner said: “The whole thing should be transparent. There is going to be no secret deal. It will absolutely be above board.”

The FIA has yet to give any details on what Red Bull’s punishment is likely to be. It was thought they would receive a fine after breaching the cap by less than five per cent. 

But, rival teams are pushing hard for tougher sanctions in a bid to prevent other constructors from breaking the rules again. McLaren boss Zak Brown demanded any team in breach of the rules are handed a 20 per cent reduction in CFD and wind tunnel time.

Meanwhile, Ted Kravitz has suggested other teams want to throw Red Bull out of the teams’ standings and see them lose out on any prize money. Horner was then asked if the FIA had offered Red Bull a breach agreement and whether negotiations are still ongoing. 

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He added: “The process as per the regulations is we have been invited into an ABA which is for a minor breach and a procedural breach. You have the opportunity to discuss with the FIA and discuss your case, your position on this. 

“We are in that process and have been for pretty much the last 10 days or so, going backwards and forwards with the FIA. I hoped for it to be resolved before this weekend. I’m hopeful it can be resolved during this weekend. 

“But should that not happen the next process it goes is the cost cap administration panel and then beyond that there’s the International Court of Appeal. It could draw it out for another six to nine months.”

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