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Teams pushed 'shark fins' for sponsors - Lauda

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Niki Lauda says Mercedes actually backed Red Bull's demands to have the aerodynamic 'shark fin' engine cover banned from F1.

The appendage came under fire during pre-season testing with fans and paddock pundits alike faulting F1 for having approved the unsightly aero device.

Indeed, Red Bull's Christian Horner, a fierce opponent of the dorsal fin, argued for a ban but was outvoted due to the "usual paranoia" in F1.

Mercedes non-executive chairman Niki Lauda now reveals that he was also in favour of a ban.

"The fin was a huge discussion in the strategy group," the F1 legend revealed to the Austrian broadcaster ORF.

"But the other teams said 'We can put sponsors on it', so that's why it was left," added Lauda.

Oddly, the space has not been commercially exploited by any teams to date, which actually comes as no surprise given the challenging economic environment for F1.

With only very marginal aerodynamic benefits for a car, a ban of the ubiquitous 'shark fin' may still be in the works.

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