Outgoing Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has revealed the reason for a lack of development compared to rival teams in the later stages of the season.
The Italian has paid the price for Ferrari's failure to produce a concerted championship challenge this year, resigning from his position after weeks of speculation around his future.
Ferrari's early pace advantage over Red Bull and Mercedes shrunk as the season progressed with the team halting its development in the second half of the campaign and scoring its final victory in July.
In a budget cap era, it could have been expected that this decision was in order to divert greater resources to the 2023 car for a push for future success.
But Binotto conceded that "it was not a choice" and added: "We simply finished the money for the budget cap.
"So we were simply at the cap and had no more opportunity of developing the car, so we simply stuck where we were.”
Following a mid-season adjustment to reflect increased energy a freight costs, this year's budget cap was $144 million.
Asked if reaching this mark at such an early stage had affected the team's preparation for 2023, Binotto insisted: “It didn’t.
"We didn’t compromise next year’s car development but certainly, we decided to stop the current one because, on top of this normal development on the current one, you would have needed to produce the parts and bring them to the track.
“That was the extra cost that we couldn’t afford.”