This weekend's Italian Grand Prix is the home race for Ferrari and Michael Schumacher is aiming to recover from the disappointment in Turkey. Istanbul was a bad weekend for the Scuderia; Schumacher was forced to retire after an incident with the...
This weekend's Italian Grand Prix is the home race for Ferrari and Michael Schumacher is aiming to recover from the disappointment in Turkey. Istanbul was a bad weekend for the Scuderia; Schumacher was forced to retire after an incident with the Williams of Mark Webber and teammate Rubens Barrichello struggled to finish 10th.
"It really was our worst performance of the season and, I would say, our worst for a long time," Schumacher stated bluntly. "It was a huge disappointment after Budapest and the potential shown. After Hungary we thought that the season could still turn in our favour. We thought we could get back to the top but the race in Turkey was a real setback."
Hearing those kinds of statements in regard to Ferrari is not something we're used to after the performance of previous years, but 2005 has proved to be quite a different state of affairs for the Maranello squad. Not only have the scarlet cars suffered from a lack of grip all season, Ferrari is not having much success rectifying the problem.
However, the team is hardly about to give up and racing at home, even if not expecting too much in the way of results, is always a boost. "We are mentally strong at home," said Schumacher. "We will not be subdued so easily."
"We have enjoyed fantastic success over recent years and one difficult season will not cause us too many problems. We are all still motivated and focused. We will work hard to get back to the top. Getting back to our best is all that interests us. Unlike previous years when we had much higher aims, this year we have lower objectives."
"Last week's tests were an improvement but I can't say that we are going for a podium or that we will repeat our showing at Hungary. We can still compete for points and, even if this cannot be considered our real aim, it is a necessary step in getting back to the top."
Spa-Francorchamps follows just a week after Monza and then it's on to the final three fly-away races of the season. Although it's still mathematically possible, it's realistic to see that Schumacher's chance of the title is highly unlikely. But that's something he accepted some time ago and now hopes for at least a better finish to the season.
"The next few races will be on circuits in which we have had some degree of success and which I know fairly well," he said. "I am optimistic. Obviously I want to show our fans that Ferrari is still a force. In exchange I hope they will give their support."