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DATE News (chronologically)
08/02/10
f1
Brawn defends Schumacher move
Michael Schumacher was handed a ten place grid demotion for the next race in Belgium after performing a dangerous blocking move on his former teammate, Rubens Barrichello, as the latter was passing the over the hill Mercedes driver on the main straight of the Hungaroring Sunday, however, Schumacher’s team boss, Ross Brawn, doesn’t believe his man did anything dangerous.

"Pretty tough - a tough move by Michael and a tough decision by the stewards," Brawn was quoted as saying on Autosport.

Fans watched aghast as Schumacher moved over and basically pushed Barrichello as close to the wall on pit straight as he could without the Williams driver actually touching it, but Barrichello continued with the move and took tenth place despite Schumacher’s tactics, stating on the radio afterwards that Schumacher should be black flagged as his move was just horrible, and the stewards agreed.

However, Brawn doesn’t believe that there was anything wrong with the move, it was simply a matter of tough racing....

"I don't think for a moment that Michael was trying to put Rubens in the wall, but he was trying to discourage him from coming down the inside because he thought that was where he would be vulnerable. But at the end of the day he gave him enough space. You can argue that it was marginal but, tough racing."

"Later in the maneuver you can see he moved away from Rubens, I don't think he expected Rubens to be exactly where he was at that time because it is a sort of maneuver that happens when you enter a corner not that far up a straight. Rubens got a very good run out of the last corner with his new tires so I think there is lots of way arguing it, but these things happen in a fraction of a second.”

"It may have ended up in a dangerous way but that wasn't the intent I am sure by Michael. Michael was defending his position, trying to encourage Rubens to go around the outside. I don't think for a moment that he saw Rubens there and thought 'I will squeeze him'. But it is a pretty tough business F1 and if you open up every time someone tries to attack you then you know the drivers in F1 who don't defend and those that do."

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