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Toro Rosso tease with April Fool

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F1 Mole | 11:13 UK time, Wednesday, 1 April 2009

stone_roses_pic555.jpgRound two of the 2009 Formula One season in Malaysia and time for the 10 teams to get down to some serious business.

Or is it? One team raised a smile at the Sepang International Circuit with a topical April Fool.

Toro Rosso tricked journalists by posting a release in the media centre saying the team will run with the optional kinetic energy recovery system (Kers) this weekend.

Not all the teams and drivers used Kers - which gives drivers an extra boost of power for seven seconds per lap - in Australia, and the pros and cons of using the innovation is a hot topic in F1 circles.

Toro Rosso took advantage to play a prank, as their media release explains.

"In the interests of maximising car reliability in high temperatures and humidity usually encountered in Malaysia, the Kers system will not actually use the recovered energy to boost engine power in the usual fashion.

"Instead the teams plan to use Kers as a sophisticated DCA (Driver Cooling Aid).

"Energy recovered under braking is used to drive a refrigeration unit to chill down the cool store.

"This is connected into a special driver suit, so when the driver presses the Kers button cold liquid is circulated around his suit reducing his body temperature.

"Studies have shown that an increase in core body temperature of just one degree can reduce driver performance by as much as 23%."

Toro Rosso's press officer revealed the media release had caught out more than a few seasoned journos.

But by the time the drivers finish Sunday's physically draining race, they might well wish F1 inventors would take Toro Rosso's idea seriously.

stone_roses226.jpg

The Renault team seem pretty determined to turn things around in Sepang judging by the music blasting out of their garage.

Fernando Alonso finished fifth in Melbourne and Nelson Piquet, who was spotted bravely running in Sepang's steamy 35C temperatures on Wednesday, crashed out.

The team have now turned to The Stone Roses for some inspiration, playing "I Am The Resurrection" to gee up team spirits.

The Mole cannot fathom what the thinking was behind the choice of the next tune; "Whippin' Piccadilly" by long-forgotten Mercury Music Prize winners Gomez.

McLaren driver Heikki Kovalainen also raised a few eyebrows when he decided to walk the Sepang track when the sun was at its height.

It seems it is not just mad dogs and Englishmen who go out in the midday sun but Finnish motor racing drivers too.

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