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McLaren wing row to overshadow season opener?

NEWS STORY
04/03/2010

Ahead of the most eagerly anticipated season of recent times, a row over the legality of the rear wing on the McLaren threatens to overshadow next week's race in Bahrain.

Even the most casual of fans must be salivating at the prospect; what with the return of Michael Schumacher, Fernando Alonso at Ferrari and two British world champions side-by-side at McLaren, not to mention the banning of refuelling during races, a move aimed at spicing up the action.

However, once again, following the debacle that was the new team selection process, F1 looks set to shoot itself in the foot as Ferrari and Red Bull prepare to protest the legality of the rear wing on the MP4-25.

"There's a bit of a fuss over McLaren's rear wing," says Red Bull's Christian Horner, according to the Daily Telegraph. "They have a slot on it that affects the air flow and they can pick up a lot of straight-line speed.

"I think it will get resolved before the first race," he added. "We've asked the FIA for clarification although I think Ferrari are probably more excited than we are to be honest."

The row comes a year after team protested the legality of the double diffuser on the Brawn, Williams and Toyota, all three teams taking advantage of a loophole in the rules. Following protests from rival teams the FIA subsequently declared the device legal by which stage the protestors were already working on their own versions.

"Basically, if you stall the wing you take all the drag off it and pick up straight-line speed," explained Horner. "It's something that's been done quite a lot over the years but with the wing separators you're not supposed to do that. Our question ultimately will be: 'Is it clever design or is it in breach of the regulations'? They must be very confident that it's legal. I would think it will be legal."

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