Gearbox saga casts new shadow over McLaren

Thu, 6 September 2007, 07:57

McLaren on Thursday found itself embroiled in yet another controversy on the eve of the Italian grand prix at Monza.

It emerged that the Mercedes-powered team was being investigated by the stewards for using a new lightweight gearbox in Budapest last month without first having it crash-tested.

Article 16.1.2 of the regulations states that any “significant modification introduced into any of the structures tested shall require that part to pass a further test”.

McLaren, led by chairman Ron Dennis, released a statement to the media denying any wrongdoing, and explaining that team officials informed the FIA that it would be using the revised gearbox casing in Hungary, subject to the rules.

“We are confident that the stewards will come to the same finding,” it read.

McLaren said it learned prior to the Turkish grand prix two weeks ago that the gearbox needed to undergo a new crash test, and so decided not to use the technology in Istanbul.

“On 30th August the McLaren lightweight gearbox passed both a push off test and an impact crash test without any problem under the supervision of the FIA,” McLaren added.

The Woking based team will therefore use the gearbox at Monza this weekend.

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