Schumacher expecting tougher competition

Michael Schumacher is expecting tougher competition this season, not only from other teams but also from Ferrari team mate Rubens Barrichello. While Ferrari and Schumacher romped home to claim both Driver's and Constructors' championships in 2002,...

Michael Schumacher is expecting tougher competition this season, not only from other teams but also from Ferrari team mate Rubens Barrichello. While Ferrari and Schumacher romped home to claim both Driver's and Constructors' championships in 2002, all the new rule changes seem set to make sure the title is not such a walkover this year.

The Scuderia and the current champion are surely still the favourites but it will be harder in 2003, as the rest of the grid raise their game: "The other teams have not done a great job last year but I am pretty sure they will do a much better job this year and therefore competition will become a lot harder," said Schumacher. "Rubens will make my job tough as well."

McLaren driver David Coulthard this week suggested that some teams may form alliances in order to gain better results, due to regulations such as no refueling between qualifying and race. The Scot inferred that smaller teams could run light fuel in qualifying to get a good grid position, then help bigger teams, with whom they may have some agreement, to get through the field quicker if they qualified low.

Schumacher thinks it unlikely that such a scenario would happen as everyone is striving to do their best: "It would be a very unfair tactic. I can't see why other teams would interfere, they have their own interests," he commented. "If you want to say things you can always say things but at the end of the day everybody will want to do their best."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , David Coulthard
Teams Ferrari , McLaren