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McLaren working flat out for German GP upgrade

Source : REUTERS
Last Updated: Tue, Jul 13, 2010 05:07 hrs
Lewis Hamilton

London: Formula One leaders McLaren hope to have a big aerodynamic upgrade in place for the next German Grand Prix after failing to get it to work properly at Silverstone last weekend.

The British-based team ditched plans to use a 'blown diffuser' - where the searing exhaust gases are channelled down to the floor of the car and out through the rear structure to increase grip -- for their home race.

Friday's practice with the new system was not in vain however, with McLaren able to carry out a back-to-back assessments when they reverted to the old floors for Saturday practice and qualifying.



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"Will we be racing a blown diffuser this year? I've got no doubt," team principal Martin Whitmarsh said after Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button finished second and fourth at Silverstone on Sunday.

"We tried here, we took a risk to get it here as quickly as we can, but I think we will be pushing hard to see if we can have it at the next race (in Hockenheim on July 25)."

"I'm glad we did it and I'm glad we took it off," he continued.

"It didn't feel like it on Friday night but now we've got a lot of good data."

Hamilton, who had qualified fourth after what he described as the best lap of his Formula One career, told Reuters McLaren had "seriously over-delivered" in the race.

All McLaren's main rivals have the blown diffuser on their cars now, with Red Bull pioneering it before the season started and Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault catching up. Red Bull's Mark Webber won on Sunday while Mercedes' Nico Rosberg was third.

The diffuser has helped Red Bull take nine pole positions in 10 races, winning five. Despite that, McLaren lead both championships.

"We know our race pace is stronger than others," Hamilton, the championship leader who is now 12 points clear of second-placed Button, told Reuters.

"With other guys bringing their upgrades they should be doing a better job, but they are just not. If we get our upgrade and it works we are going to be doing a mega job.

"I know they are in the wind tunnel now flat out to the next race, and I am hoping they fix it and sort it and bring it and I can go out there and use it to give me a much better fighting chance to get past these guys," added the 2008 champion.

"I hope that once we get that diffuser it is really going to help us close that gap and have a real race with them."

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