Red Bull has developed the RB18 more than Ferrari thought was realistic given the budget cap for Formula 1, according to Carlos Sainz.
In order to determine if there has been a substantial violation of the F1 financial laws, Red Bull is waiting on the outcome of the cap’s policing procedure.
The FIA postponed the issuance of the certificates of compliance from the Wednesday before the Japanese Grand Prix weekend to the Monday after the event.
Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez have won all four Grands Prix for Red Bull since the summer break, outpacing Ferrari by a wide margin.
Sainz spoke on the contributing factors to Ferrari’s decline saying: “We are still working on it.
“We know that Red Bull is particularly strong in the race and we want to keep exploring that and keep improving our pace in those circumstances because it is where the points are made.
“We know we have a very strong car in quali but in the race is where we are focused on and this weekend we hope we can do another step like we did in Monza and Singapore and put ourselves in the fight for a win.”
The real issue about Red Bull possibly exceeding the budget cap is the possibility that doing so aided with the development of their car.
In response to the question of whether Red Bull’s improvements or Ferrari’s decline were to blame for the current pace advantage, Sainz said: “If I knew, I would already have the solution.
“During a Formula 1 year, it is normally a combination of both, but normally Red Bull moving ahead and us, obviously, trying to keep up on development.
“But they have developed the car a lot, more than we expected that you could do in a budget cap situation and they have been developing just incredibly fast and fast moving.
“We try to keep up but sometimes it is difficult.”