Coulthard No Match for Hakkinen, Says Watson

Former Grand Prix winner John Watson believes McLaren's David Coulthard will never be a match for teammate Mika Hakkinen, despite the torrid season the Finn has endured this year.

Coulthard No Match for Hakkinen, Says Watson

Former Grand Prix winner John Watson believes McLaren's David Coulthard will never be a match for teammate Mika Hakkinen, despite the torrid season the Finn has endured this year.

Hakkinen, two-time World Champion with McLaren, struggled in the first ten races of the season, scoring only nine points to Coulthard's 47. But the Finn driver returned to winning ways at the British Grand Prix eight days ago, storming to a dominant first victory of the season.

Watson, former McLaren driver himself, believes Coulthard would not have been able to emulate Hakkinen's performance.

"Silverstone showed that Mika is simply the quicker McLaren driver," Watson told the Sunday Mirror. "It put David into perspective. I'm reluctant to agree with Eddie Irvine - but what he says about Coulthard is right. Although David has improved, his position in the Championship is more to do with the fact that Mika has under-performed.

"I could not have imagined David doing what Mika did at Silverstone. It was a blinding performance by Mika, a reminder of him at his peak. When he performs like that he is clearly McLaren's better bet to take on Michael. But Ron needs Mika to do it all the time, not once in a blue moon. The problem for Ron is he still can't be sure about David."

Watson also thinks that the McLaren team have never supported Coulthard the way they did with Hakkinen in the past.

"It might be different if the team truly do get behind David in the way they have done for Mika over these past few years," Watson added. "But somehow I don't think it will ever be the same with David. It's purely a business arrangement with him - I don't think there's much humanity or warmth there."

Coulthard currently lies 37 points adrift of Championship leader Michael Schumacher with only six races remaining in the season.

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