Formula 1 is unmistakably one of the most expensive sports on the circuit with teams spending in the region of $145 million (£121m) this season on their team’s expenses (not including drivers’ salaries and a few other exceptions).
The act of hosting the race produces another mindfield with countries paying a hosting fee of upwards of $30million.
The HITC reported that the Saudi Arabian race promoter pays $55million to host the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix - an issue that caused great controversy with F1 being accused of supporting the new phenomenon of sportwashing.
However, these are not the only expenses that are seen throughout an F1 season with drivers’ fines and penalties amounting to an increasing proportion of the FIA’s budget.
We are currently over half way through the 2022 F1 season with Max Verstappen topping the drivers’ championship by a comfortable 80 points.
However, this season has not been filled just with the ongoing drama between Red Bull and Ferrari, but we have also seen over $137,000 spent in fines.
With nine races left, here is who is currently in the charts in terms of fines and which team has suffered the most financial damage…
Who has the most penalties?
Rather surprisingly, it’s Yuki Tsunoda and Alex Albon for AlphaTauri and Williams respectively who have topped the tally for most penalties received this season so far: the Japanese and Thai drivers have collected 8 apiece. (All data courtesy of FIA and Casumo).
Tsunoda has picked up his penalties for a plethora of reasons, including pit lane speeding in Canada, driving unnecessarily slow in the Australian qualifying and for numerous stories of impeding and collisions.
Meanwhile Albon’s penalties have stemmed from gaining an advantage, leaving the track for unjustifiable reasons and pit lane speeding - amongst others.
Next up we have 2022 F1 rookie Zhou Guanyu and four-time World Champion Sebastian Vettel with seven offences so far this year while Pierre Gasly, Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll are sitting on six offences.
Esteban Ocon and Carlos Sainz have five; Valtteri Bottas, Sergio Perez and Daniel Ricciardo have four; Kevin Magnussen has three while Charles Leclerc, Lando Norris, Nicholas Latifi, and George Russell all have two apiece.
Who has the least number of penalties?
Contrary to many people’s opinion of the often aggressive driver, Max Verstappen is one of three drivers to have only received one penalty so far this season.
Seven-time world champion and Verstappen’s 2021 rival Lewis Hamilton is the second to have only acquired one penalty while Haas’ Mick Schumacher is the third.
Verstappen and Hamilton both picked up their only penalty (which cost him a hefty €10,000) for at the Austrian Grand Prix after their drivers’ assistants were deemed to have entered the Parc Femme “without permission and in violation of the procedure that was published prior to the race ‘for the orderly conduct of the event”.
Who has cost their team the most in fines?
The soon-to-retire Sebastian Vettel has clearly realised he has nothing to lose this season after racking up a total cost of €35,900 for Aston Martin in fines.
His offences have not only been the most expensive but have also been by far the most unique.
The two most notable fines have been for driving a scooter on the track within the five-minute window after P1 in Australia and for his ‘behaviour during the driver’ meeting.
Most F1 fans were appalled when Vettel picked up his €5000 fine for his scooter driving as it was one of the most iconic moments of the season so far.
His most expensive fine, however, came after the Austrian qualifying when he left the drivers’ meeting unhappy with the line of questioning.
He was summoned to bpay $25,000 over an “alleged breach of Article 12.2.1f) of the International Sporting Code and Article 20.1 of the FIA Formula One Sporting Regulations - Behaviour at the Drivers’ Meeting at 19.30.”
However, with only nine more races left in his F1 career, it’s hard to imagine Vettel will have too many cares in the world when it comes to picking up a fine for standing up for what he believes in.
Total cost for each team:
- Aston Martin - €41,800
- Ferrari - €35,000
- Red Bull - €20,600
- Alfa Romeo - €12,000
- McLaren - €10,000
- Mercedes - €10,000
- Alpha Tauri - €2,600
- Williams Racing - €1,800
- (Haas and BWT Alpine unknown)