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Horner performs apparent u-turn on 'absolutely legal' Mercedes

Horner performs apparent u-turn on 'absolutely legal' Mercedes

Horner performs apparent u-turn on 'absolutely legal' Mercedes

Horner performs apparent u-turn on 'absolutely legal' Mercedes
Ian Parkes & Ewan Gale

Christian Horner has seemingly performed a U-turn over Mercedes striking 'zeropod' concept by now declaring the design 'absolutely legal'.

The Red Bull team principal was quoted on the first day of the Bahrain pre-season test as suggesting the philosophy, which sees the smallest of inlets at the front of the sidepod before the design sweeps tightly towards the engine cover, was illegal.

Red Bull swiftly moved to state no official comment had been made regarding the W13 but asked a day later for his thoughts on the design, Horner replied: "I think it is interesting. It is very innovative what Mercedes has come up with.

"It is quite a different concept to what we have pursued and certainly some of the others have.

"It shows the creativity that exists even within restrictive regulations in Formula 1 that very different solutions can come out."

Insisting the concept was not proven to be correct, Horner added: "Now whether it is the right route, time will tell.

"What we see in Formula 1 is there tends to be convergence over a period time of design philosophies.

"But what is so good about this sport is you get a clean sheet of paper and you get 10 different interpretations.

"Mercedes have come up with an extreme one that is a different interpretation but to answer whether we think it is legal or not, yes, absolutely. It looks like it ticks all the boxes."

Horner denies illegal comment

Horner's first reaction to his supposed comments was that he was surprised, but now he has gone a step further by adamantly denying the use of the word illegal.

"Well, I think comments have been quoted that certainly weren't made," he explained. "The car is obviously innovative, it is an interesting solution.

"As far as we are concerned, the Mercedes car looks like it complied with the regulations. It is just a different interpretation and a different solution."

On whether the design complies with the spirit of the regulations, Horner added: "There is not really anything that defines the spirit of the regulations, it either complies or it doesn't.

"It is not really for us to judge. The FIA has access to all of the drawings. A design like that would have surely been submitted in advance.

"It is an interesting concept, a radical concept."

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