Hill backs Coulthard

Hill backs Coulthard

Former F1 Champion Damon Hill believes ex-team mate David Coulthard still has what it takes to be the world champion and thinks the Scot has matured. Coulthard, currently fifth in the Driver's standings, is some 60 points behind world champion ...

Former F1 Champion Damon Hill believes ex-team mate David Coulthard still has what it takes to be the world champion and thinks the Scot has matured. Coulthard, currently fifth in the Driver's standings, is some 60 points behind world champion Michael Schumacher but only six behind Schumacher's Ferrari team mate Rubens Barrichello.

David Coulthard.
Photo by DaimlerChrysler.
"I think he surprised himself at Monaco," said 1996 champion Hill about Coulthard. "He discovered something about expectations and about competing. When it became clear that he would have to have a rocket in his car to beat Ferrari he became depressed about it."

"But he seems to have matured and is taking each race as it comes, rather than running around worrying where he's going to be at the end of the year. He seems to have lightened his load a bit."

McLaren have struggled this season, beset with engine problems and not on the pace of Ferrari or Williams. Coulthard took victory in Monaco, a circuit he always drives well, but McLaren are yet to really impress this year.

There have been suggestions that Coulthard's days at the Woking team are numbered -- young Kimi Raikkonen has given the Scot something to think about and Mika Hakkinen is not yet out of the picture. Coulthard says he has a contract for next year; boss Ron Dennis says driver line-up is yet to be decided.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , David Coulthard , Mika Hakkinen , Kimi Raikkonen , Damon Hill
Teams Ferrari , McLaren , Williams