Lewis Hamilton narrowly missed the F1 title to Max Verstappen on the final lap after controversially handling a safety car opportunity in the final round of the 2021 Abu Dhabi F1 GP.
Amidst F1’s new $ 145 million budget cap for 2021, there was also a bitter development war between Mercedes and Red Bull after a tough battle on the track.
The latest major Mercedes update took place at the F1 British Grand Prix in July. Red Bull, on the other hand, continued to introduce new cars into their car for the remainder of the season.
Red Bull’s spending has been suspected by rivals since last year and was further scrutinized as rumors spread in the paddock that it may have exceeded its 2021 budget limit.
Lewis Hamilton says last season’s results would have been different had the Mercedes F1 team spent an additional “$ 300,000” on further upgrades.
“I remember putting in the last update at Silverstone last year. Luckily it was good and we were able to fight with it,” Hamilton said at Suzuka ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix.
“But then I think you’ve seen Red Bull post an update every weekend or in every other state. I think they’ve had at least four updates since then.”
“If we had spent 30 mandoles on the floor and improved the wings, obviously the championship result would have been different because we would have had better competition in the next race.”
Red Bull Racing is said to be over $ 1 million above the budget limit in 2021, which would be classified as a misdemeanor and could result in a fine.