Dr Helmut Marko says accountants have become bigger players at the top of the Formula 1 world as Red Bull defends its championship under the budget cap.
Every team is now limited to spending a maximum of just $140 million covering most expenditure items, although this was recently tweaked to address soaring inflation.
But Marko says financial considerations are now a major focus at the top teams.
“The finance department has been expanded significantly,” Red Bull’s top Austrian official told motorsport-total.com.
“In the past, engineers only had to say how much they needed and if they were outside of the business plan you had to coordinate Red Bull in Salzburg.
“Now it’s the case that the cooperation with the financiers determines the updates and also that of the scale of the updates.”
Marko said critical updates can then still occur when the accountants figure out how money can be “saved somewhere else”.
“It’s a process where the FIA learns while we learn. I hope it doesn’t degenerate into an accountants’ championship.”
For instance, teams with more complex structures like Red Bull are able to shuffle around staff between Formula 1-specific and non-F1 subsidiaries.
“We have cut people at Red Bull Racing but we still have Red Bull Technologies,” said Marko.
“The people will then be moved and given other tasks. We have the hypercar, also the America’s Cup. There are some projects where we are accommodating staff – something you don’t want to lose.”