Ralf Schumacher withdrawn from Italian GP

Ralf Schumacher withdrawn from Italian GP

Williams has decided to withdraw Ralf Schumacher from the Italian Grand Prix, due to after effects of his crash in testing recently, and replace him with team test driver Marc Gené. Schumacher was cleared to drive by Professor Sid Watkins on ...

Williams has decided to withdraw Ralf Schumacher from the Italian Grand Prix, due to after effects of his crash in testing recently, and replace him with team test driver Marc Gen?. Schumacher was cleared to drive by Professor Sid Watkins on Thursday but after yesterday's practice and qualifying sessions, the German decided not to continue.

Marc Gene.
Photo by BMW PressClub.
"Ralf did not feel well last night so we took the decision to stand him down for this race," said Williams chief operations engineer Sam Michael. "We made the decision this morning to give Marc as much time in the car as possible before qualifying. He has not raced in F1 since 2000 but he has done loads of miles in testing."

"I think in the race he will be fine because it is long runs but it is qualifying he will have to get used to. Clearly that's it for Ralf for the drivers' championship. Now we have to try and get the best position for Marc to help us in the constructors' championship."

Gen? has been the team's official test driver for three years and previously raced in Formula One with Minardi, last competing in 2000. The Spaniard has been racing this year in the Nissan World Series.

"For the team it should be okay," said BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen. "I think Marc has done a lot of everything so he should be okay. Immediately we put Marc in the car and changed everything. It took about an hour to an hour and a half to change the settings for Marc and I'm sure he will do a good job."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Ralf Schumacher , Marc Gene , Mario Theissen
Teams Williams , Minardi