Barrichello enjoys change of pace
|By Julian Linden||Thursday, March 30th 2006, 07:39 GMT|
While Rubens Barrichello no longer attracts the same fanatical following he did in his days with Ferrari, the Brazillian says he is loving the relative anonymity of driving with Honda.
The 33-year-old spent six years with Formula One's most glamorous team, albeit mostly in the slipstream of seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher, but says he could not be happier with his lower-profile Japanese team.
"It's an environment with less pressure, that's for sure," he told a news conference on Thursday.
"There was so much pressure from the Italian press, in here it's much cooler. I'm more down to earth, I don't like to be in the limelight."
Barrichello has made a slow start in his new career at Honda, limping home in 15th position in the season-opener in Bahrain then 10th in Malaysia while his British teammate Jenson Button placed fourth and third.
But Barrichello is hoping his luck will turn at this weekend's third round at Melbourne's picturesque Albert Park.
He has fond memories of Australia, finishing runner-up in 2000, 2004 and again last year, and has always enjoyed the relaxed lifestyle.
He returned to Australia at the end of last year's Formula One race to watch his friend, fellow Brazilian Max Wilson, compete in the Bathurst 1000, an endurance race for V8 Holdens and Fords.
Barrichello was so taken by the experience in the rugged rural Australian town that is as far removed from the glamour of Formula One as can be imagined, that he is considering entering the race himself once he retires from Formula One.
"I would have to have plenty of testing before because even people who have done well in touring cars (overseas) did not do so well in the V8s," he said.
"I'll have to talk to my team to see if they would let me drive a Ford or a Holden. I'm that sort of a guy, I'm open and I get used to people very, very rapidly."