BAR Stick with Fuel Tank Design

BAR will not be making any modifications to their fuel tank for their return to Formula One action at the European Grand Prix, Autosport-Atlas can exclusively reveal, despite the two-race ban the team have been handed for their use of the system

BAR Stick with Fuel Tank Design

With the FIA having confirmed that the design of the BAR's fuel tank was not illegal in itself, but the use of the extra fuel in a secondary compartment as ballast was, sources have revealed that the team are planning to continue using their controversial fuel tank system for their return at the Nurburgring on May 29.

A leading Honda engineer confirmed that no modifications will be made to the fuel system for the Nurburgring event. Tenji Sakai, who works on the team's testing programme, told Autosport-Atlas: "The fuel system will remain the same."

It is understood that to ensure the BAR007 remains legal, the team will need to add at least another six kilograms of fixed ballast to the car compared to what they ran at the San Marino Grand Prix.

Although the team will make set-up modifications to compensate for this weight, most specifically in terms of weight distribution, it is likely that this weight will cost the team around 0.2 seconds per lap.

Driver Takuma Sato claimed it was too early to say for definite how much of a handicap to the team the extra weight would be - although a clearer picture would come after BAR get back to testing at Paul Ricard on Friday.

"We don't know how it is going to be," he told Autosport-Atlas. "We will be doing some more preparation tomorrow and then let's see how it is."

When asked whether he knew the team was sticking with the current fuel system, he said: "Yes, as far as I know that is the case."

BAR have been trying out a host of aerodynamic modifications to their BAR007 during testing at Paul Ricard in France this week - and there are high-hopes that, on the back of developments tried out at Mugello prior to the Spanish Grand Prix, the team can shine on their return to action despite the weight situation.

Insiders have suggested, however, that if the team's form suffers at the European Grand Prix as a result of the weight issue then modifications may be made to the fuel tank in a bid to try to lower the amount of fuel needed to keep the Honda running.

The Honda engine requires at least six kilograms of fuel to run because its fuel system operates at a such a high level of bar pressure.

One way for the team to reduce the amount of fuel the engine requires to keep running would be to reduce the pressure that the system needs to operate at.

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