The first technical row of F1 2014 is getting underway as Red Bull call for FIA clarification over McLaren’s radical ‘wing’ rear suspension.
According to earlier reports chief designer Adrian Newey believes the new suspension, which replicates the ‘beam wing’ that is banned from 2014, may have more than the permitted six elements.
However while the Austrian world champions are calling for a decision over it’s legality, it doesn’t mean they would integrate it into the RB10 if deemed within the rules.
“The design is based upon quite a lot of air resistance (drag); especially the part that bends downward,” said Newey, according to Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport.
A former McLaren technical chief and now Mercedes team boss Paddy Lowe doesn’t share Newey’s doubts however.
“McLaren will have determined that it found a way for it to work without major disadvantages,” he predicted.
Another veteran F1 engineer is also skeptical of the McLaren design believing that the suspension will have lost some of it’s stiffness due to the arms bending towards the rear of the car.
“They may have compensated with more mass, so I would guess that the wishbones are heavier than normal,” Williams technical chief Pat Symonds explained.
If the concept is indeed legal then some believe it will give McLaren a major advantage at the start of the season, indeed they add it would take some time for other teams to incorporate the idea into their design, however, much like McLaren’s last big innovation, the F-Duct, Symonds believes most teams would concentrate on their own designs.
“It just wouldn’t be as perfect a system as McLaren’s, because they have based the whole concept of the car around it,” he said.
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