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Shark fins out for 2018

NEWS STORY
24/11/2017

McLaren's refusal to support rival teams means that the controversial shark fins that have adorned cars this year will be outlawed next season.

As is ever the case in F1, once the fins began appearing, they gradually became bigger and more prominent, and despite calls that they spoiled the aesthetics of the cars under the new regulations, it was eventually decided to use them not only for aerodynamic purposes but to help identify cars more easily by adding drivers' names and race numbers.

At the recent Strategy Group meeting the majority of the teams agreed to retain the fins for 2018, but McLaren called for a smaller version. With unanimous agreement needed it has now been decided to outlaw the fins for next year even though the majority of the teams had already incorporated the device into their designs.

"A month or so ago we had a meeting and I though we all agreed that we were going to leave the fin as it was and stick the number there," Christian Horner, who initially was a critic of the fin, told reporters.

"And then in usual fashion we left the meeting and things changed and Zak decided he couldn't see his rear wing," he continued, referring to McLaren's Zak Brown, "he's obviously signed a major sponsor for next year and he's trying to get as much coverage as he can, so McLaren presented another variant.

"The problem is that the aerodynamicists then looked at it and said 'well, that screws up the rear wing, so we don't want that'.

"So I'm not quite sure, as we sit here, what we got," he admitted. "I think it goes back to what's in the regulation, which is no fin and so we have to just work out where to stick the number. Maybe we'll have another chat and see if we can persuade Zak this weekend to put the fin back."

"Well, the rear wing is the very valuable spot on a race car that with the current engine fin blocks the rear wing," said Brown. "I don't think we think enough commercially about some of the technical regulations that we discuss and so, if you look at today's race car, front wings are no longer commercially viable.

"We've got bargeboards and aerodynamic devices blocking the chassis side and now we've got this big engine fin that blocks the rear wing, so that was really more of a case of starting to free up some commercial locations on the race car."

"It's going to complicate matters slightly," said Force India's Andrew Green. "It means we have to redevelop part of the cars which hasn't been developed because we assumed the engine cover was going to say the same.

"Now it's not so we have to redevelop parts of the car accordingly. It's not a big thing but it's still something we have to do that we didn't think we would have to do."

Check out our Friday gallery from Yas Island, here.

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1. Posted by F One, 26/11/2017 19:41

""I don't think we think enough commercially about some of the technical regulations that we discuss"
That says it all about why F1 is broken and why McLaren are so slow."

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2. Posted by Nortim, 25/11/2017 11:08

"Haha McLaren doesn't need that space for sponsors"

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3. Posted by Lapps, 25/11/2017 8:39

"Hip hip hurray!!!!!!"

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