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F1 Hot News
By Andrew Maitland
April 26, 2005


Ferrari test tactic slammed
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Ferrari's return to form at Imola has been dismissed as 'hollow' and - by Michael Schumacher's own brother - 'unfair.'

BAR 'CEO' Nick Fry said every other team is 'handicapped' by voluntarily agreeing to cut costs in a 30-day test limit.

He claimed that Ferrari, 'flaunting' the gentlemen's pact, have done nearly double the running of any other team.

Between Bahrain and Imola, the non-compliant team completed no less than sixteen days of track running.

''It was inevitable they would come back,'' Fry deducted.

Ferrari champion Schumacher's younger brother, meanwhile - 29-year-old Ralf - also slammed the Maranello tactic as 'unfair.'

The Toyota driver, in Turkey for sponsor Panasonic, told RTL television: ''We limit ourself but Ferrari carry on ... happily.

''We're interested in F1 carrying on ... while Ferrari seem not.''








F1 testing
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Ferrari and Minardi will test at Italian circuit Mugello this week.

''I wasn't really surprised when both (new) PS05s stopped,'' Paul Stoddart said, referring to the untested and fragile cars at Imola.

Williams will be out at Silverstone (UK), in rural Northamptonshire, where Nico Rosberg - son of the 1982 champion - will debut as second tester.

Kimi Raikkonen and Pedro de la Rosa, meanwhile, are to test their McLarens at Jerez de la Frontera, in south Spain, as will Red Bull and Tonio Liuzzi.








Rivals 'paranoid' - Todt
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Ferrari has denied it would be unfairly advantaged by a change in F1 qualifying this year.

Flavio Briatore (Renault) and Ron Dennis (McLaren) both hinted they did not vote to overturn the 'aggregate' system because it would favor those with a bigger fuel tank.

But Ferrari's Jean Todt, no fan of the Saturday-Sunday format, argued that the FIA could just impose a tank-size limit.

''I would be prepared to sign (that),'' the Frenchman suggested.

''(The other teams) are just paranoid. We are not in favor of this (current) system.''

Todt also rejected Peter Sauber's suggestion that Ferrari, with a new engine deal with Red Bull, will not want to sign a second customer.

''I do not feel that they will,'' said Jean, 'but if Sauber ask us (to continue supplying them), of course (we will).''








Pained five form a queue
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Five top grand prix drivers, pained expression on their faces, hopping from one foot to the other.

At Imola, it happened.

Jordan 'third' man Robert Doornbos was the first of the randomly selected six to be called into the medical centre to give a urine sample.

The FIA routinely conduct anti-doping tests.

According to Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport, though, the Dutchman couldn't squeeze a single drop.

The rest (Fernando Alonso, Tiago Monteiro, Jacques Villeneuve and Tonio Liuzzi), having all strayed from the toilet in anticipation of the test, had to wait.

''It took 45 minutes,'' said the sixth, Giancarlo Fisichella.







Schu can stay in scarlet
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Seven time world champion Michael Schumacher may want to stay on the F1 grid for 'many years.'

And, if he does, the German can drive a scarlet car, Ferrari principal Jean Todt promised.

The team's technical director, Ross Brawn - also another close friend of Schumacher - reckoned fending off, or chasing down, youngster Fernando Alonso will turn out to be Michael's 'toughest challenge.'

But, at 36, Ross said Schumi still has fuel in the tank.

''I think he's got lots of mileage left in him,'' the Briton added.

''I'm not surprised, just reminded of how good he is -- he had a lot of fight in him (at Imola).''







Sauber gave JV 'freedom'
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Jacques Villeneuve said having 'more freedom' within the Sauber team is helping him drive faster.

The French Canadian, submerged in speculation prior to finding some pace at Imola, revealed that he earlier sat down with Peter Sauber.

''With all the rumors,'' he claimed, 'everybody ... decided to be more positive.

''And the team ... gave me more freedom to work on my ideas, and that also helped.''

Villeneuve's manager Craig Pollock, meanwhile, admitted that sixth place was a 'bit of a relief' after a dismal early season.

''If (the criticism) doesn't die down now then it's pretty pathetic,'' the BAR founder continued.

Pollock also confirmed that Sauber are now letting JV 'set his car up.'








Red 'warning' - Alonso
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) Imola was a 'warning' for Renault, race winner Fernando Alonso said.

''Actually I am surprised,'' the 23-year-old Spaniard - chased hard to the flag by Michael Schumacher's Ferrari - added.

''If he had started from a normal grid position, he would have won, probably easily.

''For Barcelona, Ferrari is the favorite.''

Disregarding the warning, though - at least for now - was Monday morning's Spanish media.

'Marca' exclaimed: ''Germany has the Pope, Spain has Alonso. The Prince defeated the King.''

Italy, however, took a different - if predictable - tact. ''Next time (Ferrari) will be first,'' La Gazzetta dello Sport hypothesized.

''For Schumacher, hope glows.''








'Festival of Speed'
(GMMf1NET -- Apr.26) F1 championship leader Fernando Alonso will be the star attraction at late June's famous 'Goodwood Festival of Speed.'

The Spaniard, to be joined in England by drivers from six rival teams, will speed last year's Renault R24 up the hill.

BAR's Takuma Sato, Anthony Davidson and Jenson Button will also be there, as will David Coulthard, Olivier Panis and the 2004 BMW-Williams.

Sir Frank, Jackie Stewart, Ron Dennis, Adrian Newey and Jack Brabham have all signaled an intention to attend, while Damon Hill will drive a unique Hill-Cosworth, and Alain Prost the 1989 McLaren.

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