F1 Hot News
By Andrew Maitland
September 13, 2004
(GMM - Monza) Jarno Trulli will not race a Renault again.
The Italian, who believes the Enstone-based team are
sabotaging his car's pace, may be replaced by Jacques
Villeneuve for China.
Sources close to Flavio Briatore-led Renault say a formal
announcement, albeit not naming the successor, is being
Once again at Monza, Trulli - reportedly off to Toyota next
season - struggled to drive the R24 model over the 53-lap
But he was flying over the last three laps.
''Most of the time, I just couldn't drive (it),'' JT said.
Briatore fumed that he can't 'understand' how the
30-year-old failed to find the same speed in the first 50
Worse still, Renault lost second in the F1 carmakers' chase
to BAR, a cause not helped by Fernando Alonso's lose in the
Flavio earlier accused Jarno of suffering from a 'syndrome.'
Quick questions in Italy - Sunday 1
(GMM - Monza) It looked like a strange spin at the second
chicane, Fernando Alonso. Tell us what happened ...
Renault's driver: ''I just took too much curb on the way in,
but I was really surprised when the marshals didn't give me
Giorgio Pantano, we saw you against the barrier at
Parabolica. Would it be right to assume you just made a
mistake there ... ?
''To be honest, I don't know exactly,'' said the Jordan
The Italian added: ''I think I aquaplaned - it was a big
You and McLaren's David Coulthard tangled at the first
chicane, with a few laps to go in the race. Were you trying
a move ... ?
Williams' Antonio Pizzonia: ''Yes - I was trying. He had
more straight line speed than me but he made a mistake in
''We both locked wheels and hit but we were both ok.''
Bruni - 'I'm fine' after blaze
(GMM - Monza) Gianmaria Bruni emerged without serious
injuries from a spectacular pitlane fire at the Monza
circuit on Sunday.
The young Minardi driver was in for pit service when about a
liter of fuel spilled from the hose and briefly erupted in
''Everyone's ok,'' a team spokesman told us.
He said 'Gimmi', though, inhaled fumes from the fire
extinguisher, and could not breathe properly for a few
''Some of the fire stuff got into my helmet,'' Bruni, 22,
explained, ''and I couldn't breathe - but I'm totally fine
Boss Paul Stoddart said Minardi would 'investigate' the
'You're P1, Rubens!'
(GMM - Monza) Ferrari's Rubens Barrichello had a red mist
down en route to F1 victory, over team-mate Michael
Schumacher, at Monza.
''At one stage,'' said the Brazilian, ''I wasn't seeing.
''I was just pushing. I was telling myself 'you deserve
this, just push the throttle down and go as fast as
After pit stop number three, the first to change incorrect
wet tires, Rubens saw no-one ahead, and no-one in the rear
''I radioed the team and said 'where am I?' and they said
''I said something in Portuguese that I can not repeat!''
Barrichello, 32, also confirmed that Michael was effectively
told by the Ferrari pitwall to 'hold station' in the race's
''They said 'save the engine' because we had pushed so hard
in that race. At that stage, I felt pretty comfortably, I'd
Button - 'That's for Grandad'
(GMM - Monza) BAR driver Jenson Button would have liked to
dedicate victory in the Italian GP to sick grandad Stuart
In the end, the 24-year-old star had to settle for third.
Lyons, 83, watched the race from a hospital in Bath.
Asked what's wrong with grandad, Button told the British
media: ''A lot of things, actually, but he was so determined
''He has followed my career since I was karting.''
Button admits he didn't expect the two red cars to be so
quick in Italy. ''Their pace was untouchable,'' he said of
''But this is still good -- I dedicate this podium to BAR,
World champion Michael Schumacher, meanwhile, revealed that
he spun at the second chicane after contact with Button's
''[Jenson] couldn't avoid it,'' said the German.
''It's just one of those things that can happen.''
Carping Trulli is 'mad' - Briatore
(GMM - Monza) Flavio Briatore has reacted angrily to F1 team
driver Jarno Trulli's claim of favoritism in the Renault
Enstone's managing director said the Italian is 'mad' to
suggest that Renault is slowing down his car to elevate
Trulli, 30, will leave Renault at the end of 2004.
Briatore said in Gazzetta dello Sport: ''Why would we do
''We are fighting for second in the constructors'
championship and we need to get both cars to the finish and
in the points.
''We pay him -- and he should show Toyota he is still
But, after Pescara-born JT once again languished -
sporadically - off the pace at Monza, rumor is he will not
race again in '04.
Trulli denied the lack of speed is in his head.
''I am strong,'' he countered to ANSA agency, ''and I will
push, even if some people want me to leave (Renault) sooner.
''The car is not the same as it was.''
Marshals only push a Ferrari - Alonso
(GMM - Monza) Fernando Alonso kicked the Monza barrier in
frustration after Italian marshals refused to give him a
Renault's young Spaniard spun out of third position at the
track's second chicane and frantically summoned the helpers.
''I guess if you don't drive a red car,'' said the livid
22-year-old afterwards, ''then they just don't want to help
Last year, at the Nürburgring, German marshals gave Michael
Schumacher a push after the Ferrari spun into the gravel.
A marshal-assisted driver is only then allowed to continue
the grand prix if he is deemed to have been in a dangerous
Alonso said the 'rules' allowed the Monza marshals to help.
Furious at team-mate Jarno Trulli, Renault officials
pardoned Alonso after the race. ''It happens,'' said Pat
''He was taking a lot of risks and pushing the car to the
limit, which is what we want,'' said the team's engineering
Alonso said the R24 'wasn't very fast' at the Monza track.
Bad choice was DC's fault - McLaren
(GMM - Monza) McLaren passed the buck to departing driver
David Coulthard for choosing the wrong tires for Monza's
Team CEO Ron Dennis said the Scottish veteran was 'adamant'
the track would stay wet enough to justify starting on
''But we had to switch to dry (after the parade lap),'' he
Coulthard, 33, admitted he might have finished higher than
sixth if he'd made a better call. ''It thought it'd be ok,''
''We probably should have gone for slicks and the grid.''
Dennis, though, thinks there's at least 'one more' win in
the heavily-revised MP4-19B for the remaining three '04
Asked if he was gutted, also by Kimi Raikkonen's Mercedes
engine damage caused by a water leak, Dennis said: ''You get
used to it.
''(But) it is disappointing as we only want to win.''
BMW's Mini gift was 'rude' - Ferrari
(GMM - Monza) Ferrari was unimpressed when F1 carmaker rival
BMW presented a yellow 'Mini Cooper' to the champion team at
The keys to the BMW-built car, with a Ferrari logo painted
on the roof, were handed to Luca di Montezemolo by Burkhard
Ferrari president, Montezemolo, was later heard to suggest
that the gesture had been 'rude' and just a 'cheeky'
I didn't try to trick Schu - Montoya
(GMM - Monza) Juan Pablo Montoya has dismissed as 'rubbish'
Michael Schumacher's claim of a 'clever' driving trick at
The world champion said after the race that Juan tried to
make it look like Michael had 'gained an advantage' after
the first bend.
Schumacher cut the chicane at the race's start.
In qualifying, Zsolt Baumgartner was penalized for doing
just that, so Michael knew he'd have to let the Williams
Schumacher said: ''I slowed down to let Juan go through.
''But he was playing it a little bit smart -- he slowed
down, as well, to make it appear as if I was gaining an
Montoya was amazed at the accusation.
''No way,'' said the Colombian. ''That's rubbish.
''I was full throttle but I just couldn't grip the track.''
Schumacher, meanwhile, dedicated second place in the Italian
Grand Prix to his grandmother, Anna, who turned 80 on
Minardi's $5m damage bill
(GMM - Monza) Minardi's run of carnage has had a devastating
effect on the Paul Stoddart-led, cash-strapped Formula One
Added to crashes at Spa, the PS04B of Zsolt Baumgartner was
a total write-off after a clash with a Jordan in Monza
''It didn't really look as dramatic as the crash at Spa,''
admitted boss and owner Paul, ''but there was a lot more
''The car is a write-off.''
Estimates put the recent damage bill at around the $5m mark,
with Stoddart also believed to have said the team is 'out of
Then came Sunday - and a huge fire on Gianmaria Bruni's
China will be 'staggering' - F1 aces
(GMM - Monza) Formula One's next stop is the inaugural
Chinese GP, to be staged on the state-of-the-art circuit in
World champion Michael Schumacher has never been to China.
''Certainly I'm looking forward to it,'' said the German
driver, ''but I think we all are -- to experience a new
The Ferrari driver said he'd 'have a holiday' there first.
Brazilian team-mate Rubens Barrichello has heard that the
new circuit is 'amazing' but the facilities are 'even more
''I've only seen the track on paper,'' he admitted.
But BAR's ace Jenson Button has been there for real, the
Englishman describing the track infrastructure as
''Also, it should be a good race,'' said the 24-year-old.
''It looks like overtaking should be possible there.''
China is, of course, an important market to crack for the
world of GP racing, with its population 25-times the size of
''For us,'' Ron Dennis told Autosport, ''it represents a
business opportunity. Most teams have spent several months
'Parc ferme' + rain = safety risk
(GMM - Monza) FIA chief Max Mosley has denied that F1's parc
ferme rule, coupled with rain, puts drivers at a safety
It poured prior to Sunday's race on the high-speed Monza
track, but cars' settings were determined a day earlier, for
Usually, a wet F1 set-up sees cars raised in height, thus
reducing the risk of aquaplaning or 'skidding' on standing
''If there was a problem,'' Mosley said earlier, ''between
the teams, the stewards and the FIA, I'm sure we'd find a
''We'd never race in conditions that were absolutely
Pat Symonds, of Renault, said the permitted set-up changes
for wet weather are ''minimal. We can change the tires,'' he
Symonds said brake ducts and cooling exits are the only
other allowed changes, making driving in the wet 'much more
One more rule change likely - source
(GMM - Monza) Another F1 rule change is likely next season.
With either Williams or McLaren set to finish outside the
'top four' teams, one will be entitled to run a 'third' car
FIA president Max Mosley called the situation an 'anomaly.'
He said at Monza: ''If things stay as they are, you'll get a
team running a third car that was never intended to run a
Max said the change needs a majority vote in the F1
The rule was designed so that the least competitive teams
have a more level playing field to race against
A source at a top team admitted the rule was likely to go.
Pizzonia move 'silly' - Coulthard
(GMM - Monza) David Coulthard branded Antonio Pizzonia's
failed overtaking move in the closing stages of the Monza
The pair clashed at the track's first chicane.
Williams' 'sub' explained that the McLaren had more straight
line speed but that Coulthard made a mistake in the
''It was a good opportunity,'' said the young Brazilian.
''But we both locked our wheels and touched.''
Coulthard said the clash was 'inevitable' as he suspected
that the former Jaguar racing 'Jungle Boy' was going to try
''Unless you slipstream past in a straight line,''
33-year-old Coulthard told Autosport, ''then you can't
''When the impact came I was ready for it.''
Ferrari's 'best season ever' - Barrichello
(GMM - Monza) 2004 has been Ferrari's 'best season ever,'
according to the winner of the race at Monza, Rubens
The Brazilian said the year only lacked 'at least one win
''From the bottom of my heart,'' he said in Italy. ''With
the points we have, the wins we have, the team is very well.
''The guys behave well, even when we win a lot, and in 30
minutes we have a meeting about the China race -- it shows
how we are.''
Rubens, 32, hopes his triumph - making him the third
different winner in three races - shows that Formula One is
''I don't think today was (boring),'' he beamed.
''Ok, it was wet at the start, but ... looking at the
Tifosi, as far as my eyes would reach, they have hearts like
Rubens to succeed Schu - Ross Brawn
(GMM - Monza) If Michael Schumacher drove a different car,
Ferrari's Rubens Barrichello would be world champion by now.
That is Ross Brawn's claim.
Maranello's technical director told publication 'People'
that the Brazilian has just been 'unlucky' that Schu is so
He said: ''People ask me who could replace Michael when he
does quit, but I don't think it's an issue -- Rubens is good
Meanwhile, Michelin has ordered an enquiry into the Monza
GP, where it could not match the pace of practice or
''A bit strange,'' agreed motor sport director Pierre
F1 may lose team in 2005, warns Todt
(GMM - Monza) Ferrari principal Jean Todt has warned that
'at least one' Formula One team may not be on the grid next
The Frenchman was echoing Ferrari president Luca di
Montezemolo's call at Monza for higher revenues at the
pinnacle of motor sport.
''I know soccer teams who get more (revenue),'' he claimed.
Todt conceded the involvement of seven major carmakers makes
it 'very difficult for the small teams' to find a budget and
''Definitely there is a risk (of losing a team),'' he added.
''Maybe more than one, I don't know. If that happens, then
we will definitely damage F1. Some are really struggling.''
Jordan and Minardi are F1's poorest teams.
Villeneuve to test Trulli's Renault
(GMM - Monza) Giancarlo Fisichella and Jacques Villeneuve
are more likely than Jarno Trulli to race a Renault at
A rumor hit melting point, following Trulli's persisting
lackluster pace at Monza, that he will be let go
All eyes turned to Fisichella, already signed as Fernando
Alonso's 2005 team-mate at the Enstone-based Renault team.
But current employer Peter Sauber was quoted by the
'grandprix.com' website as denying Fisi will be available.
He told the online publication: ''I do not think Renault
would want to spend the kind of money that I would want
''(Briatore) has made his bed and now must lie in it.''
Speculation, therefore, said out-of-work '97 champion
Villeneuve is favorite, and may test the car at Jerez
starting on Tuesday.
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