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Renault debut new engine cover at Spanish test 15 Apr 2008

Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault R28 runs with a shark fin engine cover. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari F2008 with a newnose with an aero hole in the top. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton

The Renault R28 quickly became one of the most photographed cars at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya on Tuesday morning, thanks to a revised aero package featuring a ‘shark fin’ extension on its engine cover.

The striking modification, which resembles a similar addition introduced by Red Bull to the RB4 back in March, is almost certainly aimed at providing better airflow to the R28’s rear wing and maximising the car’s stability under braking.

Former world champion Fernando Alonso has been charged with assessing the new engine cover, which is just one of a number of aerodynamic modifications Renault are experimenting with this week, as they bid to improve their car’s performance ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix later this month.

Ferrari are also understood to be evaluating a radical change to their car during this week’s test. The F2008 is running with a new slotted nosecone, which has been introduced to improve the car’s downforce.