Schumacher races Montoya for title

Schumacher races Montoya for title

Michael Schumacher expects the Driver's championship to be a fight between himself and Juan Pablo Montoya in the last two races and thinks only a problem for either of them would give Kimi Raikkonen a chance. Montoya is three points behind ...

Michael Schumacher expects the Driver's championship to be a fight between himself and Juan Pablo Montoya in the last two races and thinks only a problem for either of them would give Kimi Raikkonen a chance. Montoya is three points behind Schumacher and Raikkonen a further four points behind the Colombian.

Michael Schumacher battles with Juan Pablo Montoya.
Photo by Sutton Motorsport Images.
"His car has been the surprise, it has been improved a lot. Now I think that the race for the title should be between the two of us," said Schumacher of main rival Montoya. "Raikkonen can only get into it if I or Montoya have problems or if his McLaren should improve its performance."

McLaren could do with that improvement to put Raikkonen back in the running; the Finn came home fourth in Italy after an unspectacular race, while teammate David Coulthard retired with engine problems in the final laps.

Indianapolis and Suzuka present equal chances for Montoya and Schumacher. Indy is usually a track that suits Williams and Suzuka has proved a circuit where Schumacher has done well. However, what has happened in the past doesn't guarantee the future.

"I don't think there are any circuits where one driver starts as winner already," said Schumacher. "It depends on one's form on the day. The winner will be whoever manages to put the best package together. This time it could be us, I'm sure of it."

Montoya is familiar with Indianapolis from his years in CART and won the Indy 500 in 2000 on his first attempt. "Our car can definitely do well at the Speedway as the power of the BMW engine suits the long straight, so I am anticipating a close fight with our immediate rivals," said the Colombian.

"We have two main targets to focus on now: the team needs to secure the Constructors' Championship and I have to close the gap to Michael in the Drivers' standings and, if possible, get ahead of him. We need to keep the ball rolling and make the most out of this race because Suzuka is a circuit that really suits Michael's driving style."

Schumacher could win his sixth title at Indianapolis but that result would count on him winning and Montoya finishing lower than fifth. "It would be nice but I think it is unlikely," said the reigning champion.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams McLaren , Williams