Hungarian GP: Winners' press conference

1. Rubens BARRICHELLO (FERRARI), 1h41m49.001s 2. Michael SCHUMACHER (FERRARI), 1h41m49.435s (+ 0.434s) 3. Ralf SCHUMACHER (WILLIAMS), 1h42m02.357s (+ 13.355s) Q: Rubens, second win of the year but this one must be particularly special. You did...

1. Rubens BARRICHELLO (FERRARI), 1h41m49.001s
2. Michael SCHUMACHER (FERRARI), 1h41m49.435s (+ 0.434s)
3. Ralf SCHUMACHER (WILLIAMS), 1h42m02.357s (+ 13.355s)

Q: Rubens, second win of the year but this one must be particularly special. You did it from pole, you had Michael right behind you at the finish and you clinched the constructors' championship. Is there going to be a big party like at Magny-Cours?

Rubens Barrichello: Well, I hope so. I think the most important thing is to have clinched the constructors' (title). I think it's, for the team, I think Michael has said many times how good they are and how good we are together so it is just a day of commemoration. Sometimes you feel like you only have to do this or that to win the championship and you feel a little bit under pressure, but after all we had a great car, a great team, great pit stops, great everything today.

Q: As you said there was a lot of pressure because after your two pit stops you just squeezed back on to the track in front of Michael. After the second stops did you have to hold station, like at the Nurburgring?

RB: I would not say a rule, but when you have a situation like that you just want to concentrate and bring it home. Like I said we had the best car out there, so after a point we just said we just bring it home. It is nice just to have the two cars finishing, having the constructors but still winning the race one-two is just a fantastic feeling.

Q: Michael you had to start on the dirty side of the track. How dirty was it?

Michael Schumacher: It was not very pleasant to have to try to start from the position It felt like we sort of started on ice and that made obviously the situation tight into the first corner, where Ralf naturally tried to squeeze me from the outside, but I was lucky being up enough to stay late on the brakes and stay in the position, but it was a very fair manoeuvre from him not to do anything in the wrong way but obviously we know each other not to do so and that allowed me to stay right behind Rubens and drive home, the race we did.

Q: Obviously you were very close to Rubens throughout the race. In that final stint you dropped back about three and a half seconds behind Rubens, then put in a series of incredibly fast laps and closed right up at the end. Was there ever any chance you might have found a way past right at the end?

MS: That wasn't the intention, honestly. I just had some fun and that was the main reason. It wasn't a series of laps, it was only a one-off lap and then I slowed down again and just drove safely home.

Q: Ralf, apart from that first corner bid to get past Michael, you had a very lonely afternoon.

Ralf Schumacher: Yeah, it was kind of boring. But to be honest, we didn't expect to be third here this weekend. That was our target but we had such a bad weekend except for qualifying and the race today, so we are totally happy. We were the only car out there being able to stay in reasonable distance at least and the team did simply a great job, the pit stops were brilliant and I am very happy.

Q: But it was clear that you were pushing very hard because after about 15 laps the gap to the leader stabilised. Was that just because the tyres came in?

RS: No, my tyres came in and I was pushing the whole race. The problem here, especially again with lapping people, is that you are being held up for quite a bit of time even if the gap still looks quite big, I don't know why it is here. So that sometimes makes the times a bit slow, but in general I was pretty happy today.

Q: Rubens, victory today puts you into second place, five points ahead of Ralf. How much are you looking forward to the next race at Spa-Francorchamps?

RB: Oh, very much. It is one of the best races of the year. Last year I didn't have a very good race but now with this fantastic car and we have clinched the constructors, I think we go with a little bit less pressure and try to do a good job all over again.

Q: Rubens, we've heard about Michael's start, what about yours?

RB: I couldn't believe when I looked behind and I was like two cars ahead, I said, Jesus, just stay cool and don't brake too late. It was a dream, really, to start from first place because I knew from last year that by starting third, I had so much of a chance to overtake David. So it was very clean on my side and I had a real good jump and off I went. It was really good.

Q: And after that, everything was good?

RB: Everything was good. Initially we tried to save a little bit of the rear tyres just to see if we could have any problems, but during the race we had no problems at all, not with any kind of temperature problem on the tyre, anything, I mean anything, anything that we might have suspected, there was no problem. We just had a fantastic race in terms of everything, especially for me, tyres or engine, everything was really perfect.

Q: What about when you were driving down the pit lane after your pits stops, were you worried whether you would get out ahead of Michael?

RB: You know, it's a situation whereby you have to live with the expectation during that period and you come out of the pit lane and then you see. It doesn't change if I'm there and I say Jesus, I'm going to be there and you get there, you'd just be anxious so I just let it go. I had a good and safe pit stop, I never tried to overdo what I had to do. I was just calm. And when I went out, both times, he was so close but it was good, very good.

Q: Michael said the intention was not to overtake you necessarily, so how threatened did you feel?

RB: Well, when you have such a champion - I'm not saying this because he's here or because he's my team-mate - but when you have such a champion behind you, he's always a pressure. It doesn't matter the situation, there's always a difficult race, especially in Hungary because you always have the chance of running off the track. The track was particularly very dirty on the outside so it was so easy to make a mistake today, to miss the race and to miss points. I still felt it was very difficult. We had to keep concentrating and physically it wasn't easy as well, so it was a hard race but a good one.

Q: Wasn't Michael's fastest lap a bit of a shock?

RB: To be honest with you, I didn't pay attention much. I was looking in the mirror... I felt like asking Ross if there was a problem with Michael or not, because I didn't know what was going on. I saw that all the time my board was shown, his board was there too. Suddenly, I wasn't looking in my mirror, and his board wasn't there any more and my one was there. So I felt like asking, but I said OK, I just concentrate and see... Then all of a sudden, I had Boom! I saw a car behind me and I said 'Jesus Christ! He must have done a quick lap.' But Ross said, there was five laps to go, he said don't worry, he's having fun.

Q: Was that what it was, Michael, having fun?

MS: Basically, yeah!

Q: Just to wake everybody up?

MS: Just to wake up myself probably!

Q: It was a hell of a lap, what was the story behind it?

MS: The story behind it actually, was that at Silverstone, he (Rubens) was behind me and we sort of slowed down the pace, we didn't push hard any more, and some laps before the end, he put in the fastest lap of the race. So I asked 'when did you do this?' We were in the stage of actually slowing down, so today I asked Ross, 'what's the fastest time?' and he said it was 16.8s for him (Rubens) so I thought OK, I will pay him back! I just went for it.

Q: But you had actually dropped back to 4.4s behind him?

MS: We were cruising at this time. We were just driving safely because, as Rubens said, it's very easy to make a mistake here, run wide and once you run wide, I guess you have seen it happening to a lot of guys and it's easy to have an accident. So we just drove home safely, didn't force anything and that means that you can easily go two or three seconds slower and to do this time, I needed this sort of gap because otherwise I wouldn't have been able to do the time.

Q: Now both of the championships are out of the way, do you think you might be allowed to race one another?

MS: It is very clear that we want to make sure that Rubens sort of does the job in order to get the second position in the championship and until this, obviously, to some degree, we are not completely open to race because there's no point in me taking points away from him, that's not the intention. Let's hope that happens soon and then we can have good fun again.

Q: Ralf, what about your start? You very nearly overtook Michael at the start.

RS: Only nearly, didn't I? No, there was never a chance. He was on the inside and he decided to brake late and I knew that there was no chance. The problem is, especially in turn one, that as soon as you come off the line, there is so much dirt and stuff that usually you lose the back end and lose even more positions, so I decided to back off and stay inside and to take the third, safe option.

Q: You got up to 11 laps during which you'd been losing time to Michael, but then the gap really did stabilise. What made that difference?

RS: Well, for us it seems that the tyre throughout the race gets better and better and that's basically the case. They usually start on new tyres which is an advantage for the first five, six, seven laps maybe compared to us but then we start to stabilise. But by that time, usually, it's a bit late, as we saw again today. But whatever, even if that had stabilised there was no chance. As in previous races, they are still too strong for us.

Q: Ralf, was it really quite a boring race today?

RS: No, I mean not boring. It wasn't necessarily exciting but then I was mainly by myself and that's not always easy.

Q: Would it be more interesting if we had a wet race here?

RS: It could be very interesting, but at the moment I rather prefer dry races. It might change in the next year or so, but I prefer this circuit dry. It's slippery enough with all the stuff next to it or next to the main line so I think it's better to have it dry. Overtaking on these circuits is difficult, we know that. We have similar circuits on the schedule so I don't see that it's a problem. It was simply not so exciting because everything was quite far apart, that's all, nothing to do with the circuit.

Q: You crossed the white line at the pit lane exit after your first pit stop, I think?

RS: There is no white line.

MS: No, but there is a rule actually. If there is, it was set before the weekend, that sometimes we do say that you can cross it and this weekend it was allowed to cross the entry and exit line.

RS: I since I'm an expert at crossing white lines...

Q: Michael, you said you did the lap to wake you up; how much were you on automatic pilot?

MS: You know sometimes it's more difficult to do this and you have seen me doing mistakes, just sort of driving safely and not 100 per cent any more because the concentration reduces and a little more getting off-line is enough that the car spins and you're not concentrated and sharp enough to catch it. This wasn't the reason for waking up, I explained the reason before, but this time I had a very good car. It was very safe to drive at this pace without problems, so it wasn't too much of a problem, although these laps times you have to do, it still needs and requires a certain effort.


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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Ralf Schumacher , Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello