The controversy over copying Formula One cars continues to gain momentum, as Red Bull team leader Christian Horner warned that any transfer of Aston Martin intellectual property by former employees would be a “criminal offense.”

Aston Martin was researched by the FIA ​​after developing an upgrade package that was remarkably similar in design to Red Bull, but cleared of violations of any rules related to reverse engineering. However, Horner speculates that an IP transfer could have taken place after several members of the Red Bull team were recruited by Aston Martin in recent months.

“It’s no coincidence a few people moved from Red Bull to Aston Martin during the winter and early in the season,” Horner told Sky Sports. In fact the FIA ​​this week drew our attention to this, saying, “Is there a car that is extremely similar to your car, can we get a list of your retirees?” Of course, this is immediately alarming.

What is permissible – we see it in the podium, where people move from team to team after a period of “gardening” – what they take in mind is fair play. This is their knowledge. What is unfair and completely unacceptable – with which we would disagree – is when there was an IP transfer.

“I’m not going to reveal where we are with some individuals. It would be a crime because IP is the source of the team’s life, we invest millions and millions of pounds in it. You wouldn’t want to see this appear in an opponent’s organization. Otherwise we can also franchise – we can also sell aerodynamics. “

Horner says Red Bull will reconsider its security measures, but believes the FIA ​​needs to do more to find out how IP could be accessed.

“We will have an internal investigation. We have our own protection programs – we know exactly what software is viewed and where that software is monitored. But this is the job of the regulator, the FIA, because they have access and we are very much counting on them to ensure that there will be no IP transfer and there has been no abuse of this. So, it’s their job – it’s the police. “

Although the FIA ​​said Aston Martin satisfied the governing body for not reengineering the design, Horner says it was an obvious result because of the timing of such development and the time the Red Bull concept first disappeared.

“We didn’t even realize what it looked like a month ago, so the work started long before that. Updates up to that point hadn’t even been noticed, so you didn’t change it from the image because it wasn’t on our car. We want to make sure that no IP will be transferred between one organization and another, because that would be a big violation of the rules.

“We will work with the FIA, but as regulators, it depends on them. In fact, it is a precedent that he sets. It’s not the biggest problem for us if Aston Martin doesn’t start beating us. But for teams in midfield it could have a significant impact on them. The most important thing for us is that we want to ensure that our IP is protected and not abused.

“(FIA) stated that they adhered to the deadlines and accept what was presented by Aston Martin. Of course, if there is any evidence of a bad game, it becomes different. “

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