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McLaren sets practice plan for diffuser
McLaren will use Friday practice at next week’s German Grand Prix to carry out a major test evaluation of its MP4-25 with, and without, the ‘blown diffuser’ as it bids to get the concept race ready as soon as possible.

The championship-leading outfit was forced to abandon the system – which sees exhaust gasses redirected through the diffuser to increase rear downforce – after the opening day of running at Silverstone after it caused handling and overheating problems.

McLaren has spent this week at its factory carrying out tests on the concept as to tries to learn more about the best way to optimize it – but team principal Martin Whitmarsh says only when it is track tested on the MP4-25 again next Friday will the team really be able to see how much progress it has made.

He says the squad will therefore carry out a “major test program” on the system on the opening day at Hockenheim before deciding whether to keep the changes on the car for the remainder of the weekend.

“The days since the Santander British Grand Prix have been spent back at the MTC [McLaren Technology Centre] industriously undertaking rig tests, dyno running and development in the wind tunnel to ensure that the future deployment of the blown diffuser gives us a more accurate and beneficial read,” Whitmarsh revealed.

“Of course, that final validation will only come at the circuit. So we’re looking at undertaking a major test program on Friday at Hockenheim. This will involve both drivers running back-to-back evaluations with the T2 and T3 floors.

“And, if these prove positive, we’ll then look at the deployment of the new floor for the remainder of the race weekend. But that’s a decision we’ll only make after a thorough analysis of the inherent risks and benefits.”

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