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Clever Mercedes front wing causes a stir across F1 paddock

The unveiling of the new Mercedes W15 front wing has drawn the attention of rival Formula 1 teams during the initial phases of pre-season testing in Bahrain.

Amid the hustle and bustle of F1 testing in Bahrain, the spotlight has turned to Mercedes' front wing design, prompting speculation regarding its compliance with FIA regulations.

The wing boasts three flaps, with the uppermost flap intricately connected to the nose via a small piece of carbon fibre.

Of particular interest is the attempt to replicate the coveted 'Y250 vortex' phenomenon, characteristic of pre-2022 front wing designs, known for enhancing downforce and aerodynamic performance.

"What Mercedes have done is really clever here is they've got this outer element, the upper blade of the four bits of the front wing," said F1 technical expert Sam Collins.

"It's just essentially a wire to meet the regulations saying that all those blades and elements have to be continuous all of the way through the entire front wing structure without gaps or limitations or slots that we used to see.

"Mercedes decided they wanted to have an old front wing. Looking at the Sauber, the upper element, the top blade of the front wing, that's what everyone thought the rules should be but if you look at the outer end, there's just a tiny bit of a linkage at the endplate.

"That little black section keeps that legal. Mercedes has taken that concept, flipped on its head and cut away that whole inner section of the front wing."

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