F1 Hot News
By Andrew Maitland
April 19, 2005
Ferrari refute FIA bias
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Ferrari are very close to the governing
That's rubbish, according to scarlet-clad technical director
Ross Brawn -- and he reckons a winning drought proves it.
The Englishman blamed Ferrari's miserable start to 2005 on
the change of regulations.
''You could say our biggest problem is the (one-tyre)
rule,'' he conceded in Welt am Sonntag.
''We just didn't do as good a job (as Michelin) over the
So where's the FIA-Ferrari link? Brawn said that if the
Paris body really favoured Maranello's team, they wouldn't
have made 'the smallest change' to the rulebook.
''(But) that doesn't mean we have someone else to blame,''
Ferrari on 'road back'
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Ferrari's on the road back to victory,
beleaguered tyre supplier Bridgestone has vowed.
Director of motor sport Hiroshi Yasukawa said a good result
for the local team is 'important' at Imola, just a 45-minute
drive from Maranello.
He vowed: ''There is a huge amount of potential yet to come.
''We fully expect to see a competitive performance ... this
Meanwhile, at Monza on Monday, Ferrari - continuing to
flaunt both the gentleman's agreement and existing 'Suzuka'
concord - tested with Luca Badoer and an old F2004M on a
modified (with two extra chicanes) layout.
JV to 'work even harder'
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Life may not be rosy for Jacques
Villeneuve at Sauber, but the embattled former champion has
vowed to give it another go at Imola.
He even called Bahrain, where he 'almost' got a point, a
''The car was stronger,'' said the 33-year-old, ''and I
could drive more aggressively.''
Tensions, though, mounted at a pre-Imola Barcelona test,
where Villeneuve again struggled for pace and was replaced
by teammate Felipe Massa.
However, the Canadian - to next test the C24 at Fiorano
after Imola - vowed to 'work even harder' on set-up at the
''But it seems like we're going in the right direction.''
'I want to race' - Ant
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Anthony Davidson has admitted that 2005
is turning out to be 'more mentally demanding' than before.
The long-serving BAR test driver, desperate for a racing
drive, said that this year - particularly as he's no longer
doing 'Friday' practice - it's 'easy to get ... frustrated.'
Davidson, who subbed for a sick Takuma Sato at Malaysia, had
drives for 2005 scuppered by BAR-Honda, for whom he only
recently signed a formal test contract.
''Physically, I am more prepared than I've ever been,'' said
the young Briton. ''(But) I just want to race.''
'Renault v. Ferrari' at Imola
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Imola. It's not just 'any old' grand
prix circuit for Italy's Renault driver, Giancarlo
He first tasted F3 glory at the 'Enzo e Dino Ferrari' track,
and - in Formula One - scored a maiden point in 1997.
So who's going to be Renault's main rival for victory in the
San Marino grand prix?
Fisichella answered: ''Toyota have been our main competitors
so far, so why can't they be strong at Imola as well?
''Ferrari is our other big concern. We will have a tough job
to stay ahead of them.
''I think they'll be very, very competitive.''
Schu - 'nothing to lose'
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Michael Schumacher doesn't just want to
return to the F1 podium at Imola.
The seven time drivers' champion wants the biggest San
Marino grand prix trophy of all.
''I think we have a very good chance,'' Germany's Ferrari
He slammed those 'pessimists' who say Fernando Alonso -
already 24 points ahead - is the 2005 world champion
''Ok, we have not had a good start,'' Schumacher, 36,
admitted, ''but the situation is not miserable and the world
title is not yet decided.
''It's not impossible to catch up. Alonso will ultimately
try to keep out of trouble, but I have nothing to lose.
''I can take more risks than him.
''And, after testing, the F2005 is not only completely
reliable, it is better in every way.''
Michelin go aggressive
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Not content to rest on their laurels,
tyre supplier Michelin have hauled never-before-raced
specifications to Imola.
French-clad Renault have won every grand prix so far in
But other teams, like McLaren - bemoaning qualifying pace -
and Williams, quietly complained that the ultra-durable
Michelin could've been worked even harder on track.
Indeed, Sam Michael - Williams' technical director -
explained that Imola is even 'softer' on tyres than
Melbourne, Malaysia and Bahrain.
The Australian said: ''Our car has not yet been close to the
limits on tyre wear.
''We will have even softer compounds (at Imola).''
Fisi may 'fight' Fernando
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Giancarlo Fisichella can still charge
for the championship.
Renault principal Flavio Briatore vowed not to hold the
Italian back if he duelled with runaway title leader and
teammate Fernando Alonso.
''If they were to fight for the championship,'' Giancarlo's
countryman told La Gazzetta dello Sport, ''I'd let them.''
To some, it's amazing that Fisichella - dumped in 2001 - is
allowed to drive for Enstone whilst no longer 'Flav'-managed.
Briatore, though, is clearly an admirer.
''It's a pleasure now to watch him,'' Flav said. ''He's
deeply changed, much stronger mentally.''
Montoya's the man - Ralf
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Who's the best McLaren man -- Kimi
Raikkonen, or Juan Pablo Montoya?
Everyone has an opinion; like Ralf Schumacher, Montoya's
teammate at Williams between '01 and '04.
''I think (Raikkonen) makes too many mistakes,'' 'Schu Jr'
said in 'Kicker' magazine.
What about Jarno Trulli, who's presently wiping the floor at
Toyota with a fair-haired 29-year-old from Germany.
''He is an outstanding driver,'' said Ralf, reportedly paid
several million dollars more per year than JT.
''Is he the best teammate I've ever had -- I can't say
Schu Jr does, though, rate brother Michael's chances of
returning Ferrari to the very top step of the podium at
''If the car and (Bridgestone) tyres make it (on Sunday),''
he said, ''they have a good chance.''
'No time for title talk'
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.19) Fernando Alonso doesn't want to talk
about the world championship.
Although commandingly leading the drivers' chase, the young
Spaniard said he's too focused on scoring points and
'building' a foundation for later.
''We shouldn't talk about the title based on the first three
races,'' Alonso said on Monday.
''It's the last three or four that'll be the important ones.
Right now, I'm just enjoying myself and also working hard.''
Renault's all-winning R25 will wear a new front wing at
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