- McLaren news
Neale plays down F-duct advantage
According to McLaren's Managing Director Jonathan Neale, the team is not concerned about the impending decision whether or not the team will run its pioneering F-duct innovation at Monza.
It was reported this week that McLaren may not decide to run the F-duct at Monza, where the drag-reducing device was thought to provide a distinct advantage on the circuit's long straights. But according to Neale, a decision has yet to be made and the team will look at how it performs at Spa.
"I'm certainly not worried. I read that on Monday morning as well and there were a few of us raising our eyebrows when we were looking at that," Neale told the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes phone-in. "We have the option to either run it or not. I think that at the moment we are just looking at all the options, I think it's incorrect to assume that we have made any decision of whether we are or whether we are not - we will have the choice. We will watch carefully where the end-of-straight speeds come out during the Spa weekend, see how competitive we are and then we will make decisions in the following week but the nice thing is that we've got options."
Neale added that the decision not the F-duct at Monza could be made if the team decides it can achieve a better advantage by taking off the added weight and setting a normal low-downforce wing configuration.
"It all depends on where you want to be for total aero efficiency. Monza and Spa are lower downforce circuits but there does tend to be a little bit of a herd instinct going on in F1 as to where downforce is set or where end-of-straight speed is set. Also I think that other teams have F-ducts and other teams are performing quite well in a straight line.
"So if we think we can get an advantage from it we will run it but if by either taking the weight out of the system or by making the rear wing inherently more efficient and still achieving the same on the end-of-straight speed that we can run a different wing for Monza then we will do that. But it's in the fine tuning, it's certainly not going to make a difference between winning and not. It's relatively small stuff because it's such a low downforce circuit."