German GP: Bridgestone race notes

German challenge ends with 5th for Schumacher & Bridgestone This afternoon's German Grand Prix proved a frustrating one after Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro's Michael Schumacher missed out on a podium place after a strong start which saw him leap...

German challenge ends with 5th for Schumacher & Bridgestone

This afternoon's German Grand Prix proved a frustrating one after Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro's Michael Schumacher missed out on a podium place after a strong start which saw him leap from fifth on the grid to third within the first lap.

The reigning World Champion ran with the front runners for much of the 67-lap race before a combination of lack of grip and a car problem at the end of the race left him vulnerable to the chasing pack. After a nail biting final few laps, he finally crossed the line in fifth to add four points to his tally and edge closer to second placed Raikkonen in the standings.

Teammate Rubens Barrichello finished tenth after starting from 15th, which sees him drop a place in the championship. Ferrari maintains its third place in the Constructors' Championship.

There was also plenty of action further down the field for their fellow Bridgestone runners. Christijan Albers had a strong run to finish 13th, ahead of a Toyota and a Sauber, while his new fellow Dutch teammate, Robert Doornbos, will be pleased to have finished his first GP after contact with Sauber's Jacques Villeneuve.

Jordan's Narain Karthikeyan finished 16th while Tiago Monteiro, will be relieved to have finished another race after he too made contact with Villeneuve.

Hisao Suganuma, Technical Manager Bridgestone Motorsport:

"It became evident at the beginning of this afternoon's race that Michael's qualifying performance yesterday was very good as he did not come in for his first pit stop until lap 22. He was also able to get a good, strong start, jumping from fifth on the grid to third by the end of the first lap and he had pace. Unfortunately he was not able to maintain that position as his tyre wear was higher than we would want towards the end and he was losing grip."

"Rubens was on a different tyre and although he finished 10th from 15th on the grid, we would have preferred to see him higher up. Minardi's Christijan Albers had a good race and finished a positive 13th. While we have been pushing hard with our development recently and there are clearly some positive aspects from this weekend's results, especially in qualifying and the start of the race, there is still some work to do. We have the data from all our teams and we shall use it to develop the next step of improvements and regain some consistency."

Ross Brawn Technical Director Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro:

"A frustrating race because we started well but the performance faded as we went through the race. At the end we had a problem holding any sort of pace making us vulnerable to the cars behind. Michael had a problem with the car at the end, which meant Fisichella got past, which was a shame but it was difficult and our performance was going the wrong way through the race."

-bridgestone-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Jacques Villeneuve , Narain Karthikeyan , Ross Brawn , Christijan Albers , Tiago Monteiro , Robert Doornbos
Teams Ferrari , Sauber , Minardi , Jordan