2010 British Grand Prix: Friday News Round-Up #2

McLaren ditch ‘blown diffuser’; Austin GP hits a snag; Lotus announces Dell deal

McLaren looks set to run without its ‘blown diffuser’ exhaust concept at Silverstone, after the team was reported to have removed the system from its cars.

Autosport has revealed that both Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button failed to get comfortable with the updated system – prompting the team to revert back to its previous design.

However, the article states that the Woking-based outfit are confident that the system is profitable and will strive to introduce it during the German Grand Prix weekend.

Meanwhile, plans for Formula One to return to the United States have been thrown into doubt after reports suggested that organisers have dodged questions about its funding.

Grand Prix racing is expected to make a comeback in American in 2012, with an agreement announced in May to stage the race on a newly built circuit.

However, according to a report by the Austin Business Journal, Tavo Hellmund, promoter of the proposed event in Austin, has failed to respond to queries made by the FIA – with Formula One’s governing body reported to be largely in the dark.

Although the article states that race organisers have been given a vote of confidence by Formula One’s commercial rights holder, the FIA is said to be unsure, with FIA President Jean Todt casting doubt on the race.

“At the moment, it’s just a project,” he told Fox Sports earlier in the week. “I don’t think something will happen next year.”

Despite this, the article also cites a spokesman for Hellmund’s company, Full Throttle Productions, who states that the event is still on target and that organisers are looking forward to working with the FIA.

“Full Throttle Productions and Formula One Management have worked diligently for two and a half years to bring Formula 1 racing back to the United States,” spokesman Trey Salinas is quoted as saying. “Formula One Management is satisfied with our plans to fund and build an Austin track.”

The FIA is also said to be querying where the purpose-built facility will be located and its configuration – with organisers expected to submit their plans no later than the FIA World Motor Sport Council in December 2011.

However the spokeman said that a masterplan was being finalised and would be presented to the FIA’s Circuit Commission in September.

Finally computing giant Dell has announced its return to Formula One; this time in the capacity as official technical supplier for the Lotus F1 team.

The Texas-based company had previously been involved with the BMW Sauber team up until the end of last year.

Although it is not believed to be a major sponsorship deal, a press release on the Lotus’ official website revealed that Dell’s technology has already been integrated inside the team, including dedicated supercomputer hardware and software to power the outfit’s various Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) systems.

“We’re thrilled to be working with Lotus Racing to provide a high performance and reliable end-to-end IT solution to help drive the business both on and off the track.” Dell Vice President Stephen Murdoch said. “What we’ve already achieved together in a short period of time has been phenomenal and we are excited about the role Dell can play in supporting the organization’s future growth enabling Lotus Racing to focus on what it does best – achieve excellence in racing.”