Coulthard vows to come back fighting

David Coulthard has vowed that the battle for this year's Formula 1 World Championship goes on despite surrendering another 10 points to his rival and standings' leader Michael Schumacher in Sunday's French Grand Prix

Coulthard vows to come back fighting

The Scot slipped 31 points behind Schumacher as he finished fourth, taking three points, while the German romped to victory in what he had rated his hardest race of the year.

With a more competitive McLaren and improved Bridgestone tyres, the Scot said he could have been battling for victory. But his hopes died when he bagged a 10-second stop-go penalty halfway through the race for speeding in the pitlane.

Schumacher claimed his victory was a "big step" towards his fourth championship while Coulthard refused to see the defeat as a watershed result.

"The championship hasn't been won or lost at Magny Cours," said Coulthard. "The points gap between Schumacher and myself has increased and the situation is difficult, but not hopeless.

"There are still seven races to go and I just take them one at a time because you can never guess what will happen. I'm now going to concentrate on Silverstone - the home Grand Prix for me and my team.

It was a miniscule mistake - just 3mph over the limit for the final few metres of the pitlane - when he was on the radio talking to the team. But the extra stop cost him the chance to battle for victory.

"I'm disappointed to have made the mistake," he admitted. "But you have to push in every area of the track and that includes the pitlane. The fact is this has cost me points and ruined by race. It is a shame because we were competitive today but I was just a bit too eager to come off the button at the exit. But I have to face the consequences of my mistakes.

"Michael's doing a good job he is having the luck but has also got a good package with the Ferrari and when you put all that together it is not surprising he is getting good results."

Coulthard has 47 points, Schumacher 78 and Ralf Schumacher 31.

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