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Ferrari drops KERS for China.


Despite having admitted that there are definite advantages to running the optional technology, Ferrari has decided to ditch its KERS system for the Chinese Grand Prix this weekend.

While BMW Sauber takes the opposite view and prepares to add the weighty system to Robert Kubica's car for the first time this season, the Scuderia has decided that, following problems for Kimi Raikkonen in Malaysia last time out, that there is a bigger downside to persisting with the technology as Ferrari attempts to lift itself off the bottom of the constructors' championship.

“We found a problem with the KERS on Kimi's car in Sepang and we have therefore decided not to run KERS this weekend in Shanghai,” team boss Stefano Domenicali confirmed, “We need to understand what happened to the system from the point of view of safety and reliability."

Raikkonen ended Friday morning practice at Sepang with smoke pouring from his cockpit after a KERS failure caused a battery to melt, while Sunday's torrential rain is also reported to have played havoc with the low-slung technology, leading to images of the 2007 world champion eating an ice-cream while the rest of the grid waited for a decision on whether the race would restart.

"[KERS] has delivered a performance benefit but, if it is not running safely and reliably, we can no longer take the risk of running it," Domenicali continued, "This weekend, we must therefore do the best we can with what we have and await the new developments on the car, while going back to basics in every area."

The team is currently embarking on a major rethink of its F60 following Wednesday's ruling that the controversial diffusers fitted to some rival cars are legal.

"To sum up, we are not happy and we must react immediately," Domenicali said of the need to now design a comparable diffuser set-up, "I know the strengths of this team and I know that all the people are working flat-out. It is important to remain cool and calm.

"Our hopes for Shanghai are to take home what we can. It will be difficult to win in terms of our performance level, but we must do the best we can.”

BMW Sauber, meanwhile, has confirmed that the taller, heavier Kubica will join team-mate Nick Heidfeld in running KERS this weekend, hoping that the power boost that the system offers will offset the addition weight to be carried around the Shanghai circuit. The Pole is expected to evaluate the addition during Friday practice.

McLaren and Renault are both expected to continue running KERS this weekend, although both teams could make changes in other areas following Wednesday's diffuser ruling. McLaren is expected to have a new front wing and, possibly, a revised diffuser on hand, while Renault was rumoured to have had a similar diffuser development on the stocks.


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