I’m sure that Ferrari will have gained some inner symbolic satisfaction from being the first team in the F1 business to unveil their 2008 F1 world championship car, just pipping McLaren’s new MP4-23 by a single day. Low key presentations have been the order of the last few days, Ferrari taking the wraps off its new car at Fiorano (below) while McLaren showed off their latest handiwork at the new Mercedes museum at Stuttgart.
So does all this presage another season of two horse races with Lewis Hamilton, Heikki Kovalainen, Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa carving up the 18 race wins between them, while the rest of the grid look on from a distance – and in mounting frustration?
McLaren, of course, has a delicate balancing act to manage. They have to develop the MP4-23 into a race-winning car whilst avoiding the incorporation of anything into its design which might be interpreted as owing its antecedence to a Ferrari design concept. McLaren’s F1 CEO Martin Whitmarsh is bullishly confident that this can be achieved without Krakatoa erupting from the general direction of Maranello.