McLaren set for January 24 launch

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McLaren didn’t win any races, or even score any podiums, in what was a frustrating 2013 campaign. But, the legendary British team may be the first to launch their 2014 challenger. Mercedes has also announced for Jan. 28.

From the team this morning: “We will reveal our 2014 Formula 1 car, the MP4-29, during an online-only digital launch at 12:00pm midday UK time on Friday January 24.”

Whether that will be the first launch of a 2014 chassis is still yet to be determined. But there’s a few things we need to look out for with this launch:

  • The presence of its new title sponsor, with Vodafone out. The 2014 season could be a “stop-gap” season on the primary sponsor role if the Honda power unit presence in 2015 means it has any say on the livery. Alternatively, a new title sponsor for 2014 could carry the brand forward for a long time to come. The 2006 season saw a “stop-gap” livery in-between the departure of West after 2005, per tightened tobacco regulations, and Vodafone’s introduction ahead of 2007.
  • Kevin Magnussen’s presence. The rookie will be introduced in full McLaren guise, beyond just interviews as one of its junior drivers, on this occasion.
  • The car itself. Renderings have made the 2014 cars look awkward at certain spots, so seeing what a 2014 chassis looks like in the flesh will produce its own round of reactions.

Wide range of tire selections for Mexican Grand Prix

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The focus this week is on the United States Grand Prix from Circuit of The Americas in Austin, but because it’s Tuesday, the Pirelli tire selections for next week’s Mexican Grand Prix are also out.

And for once, there’s a wide variance in selections.

Both Red Bull and Ferrari have gone for a more balanced portion of supersoft and ultrasoft tires, with Red Bull only selecting six sets of ultrasoft tires.

Meanwhile all other teams have gone between eight to 10 sets of ultrasoft tires.

The full breakdown is below.