Ferrari Remain Strong, Says Schumacher

Ferrari's determination to return to the top in Formula One has not been dented by the setback in performance they suffered in the Turkish Grand Prix

Ferrari Remain Strong, Says Schumacher

That is the view of World Champion Michael Schumacher, who claims that the team are heading to their home Grand Prix in Monza this weekend as motivated as ever to get back to the front.

It comes after the team slipped down the order in Istanbul, after they appeared to get on top of their recent troubles in the previous race in Hungary.

"We are quite strong mentally," said Schumacher on Monday. "We will not let anything bring us down that easy.

"We had so many successful years, we are not going to let one difficult year throw us off. We are all highly motivated and focused, and we are all working hard to get back in the game."

Schumacher admits that the team's performance at the Turkish Grand Prix, which has been widely blamed on Bridgestone needing to use an older specification of tyre, was hard to accept.

"That was surely our worst performance this season, and also in a long time. A big disappointment following the optimism that had come up after Budapest," he added.

"After Hungary, we had thought that maybe we could turn things around and get back on the track of success. So therefore, the race in Turkey was a major set-back."

With last week's test at Monza having failed to deliver the kind of improvement that Ferrari needed to consider themselves as back in the hunt for victories, Schumacher admits that it is hard to make any firm predictions for form this weekend.

"Contrary to the past years, when we mostly came to Monza to fight for the win, our expectations are a bit reduced this time.

"The test last week showed an improvement, but I'm not sure if we can hope for a podium position or a performance similar to Hungary. But we can compete to score some points, and even though that can't be our true aim, it's still a step back in direction of our old strength.

"The races that are coming up are all in places where we've been successful in the past and that we know well. I'm optimistic that we will be doing better again soon. Because naturally we want to show the Tifosi a strong Ferrari team. In return, we are hoping they will show us their support."

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