McLaren Now to Focus on Hakkinen

McLaren are expected to put their full weight behind Mika Hakkinen now that his fellow driver David Coulthard has little chance of winning the Formula One championship, an executive for the team's partners Mercedes said.

McLaren Now to Focus on Hakkinen

McLaren are expected to put their full weight behind Mika Hakkinen now that his fellow driver David Coulthard has little chance of winning the Formula One championship, an executive for the team's partners Mercedes said.

Juergen Hubbert, a board member at Mercedes, told Motorsport magazine that Coulthard, who trails Finn Hakkinen and German Ferrari driver Michael Schumacher, had almost no chance of winning after being involved in a crash in the Italian Grand Prix on Sunday.

With three races left, Hakkinen leads with 80 points, two ahead of Schumacher and 19 ahead of Coulthard.

The Briton had led Hakkinen early in the season after winning at Silverstone. He again passed Hakkinen in midseason after taking first place in Monte Carlo and France.

"Through the crash in Monza, in which David Coulthard had no responsibility whatsoever, the situation looks as if his chances for the title have become minimal," Hubbert said.

"So I assume we will concentrate on one driver for the final races." That would mean, he added, that Coulthard would have to assume a supporting role for Hakkinen.

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