Patrick Head Q&A

Two cars on the podium reflected an improved overall race performance for Williams in Germany, and unlike in France McLaren was left far behind. In the first stint Ralf Schumacher kept his brother in sight, although a series of unlucky delays cost a few seconds here and there, and helped Michael to sneak away. An engine problem forced Ralf to concede second place to his team-mate in the closing stages, but at least by then Rubens Barrichello was no longer a threat. Adam Cooper spoke to Patrick Head

Patrick Head Q&A



"Michael had a problem with blistered tyres in the first stint, so we were competing against a car with blistered tyres. Then on his second and third sets of tyres he didn't have the same problem, so in effect he was quicker. Equally when we were able to close down on him in the first stint Ralf had some unlucky breaks with traffic holding him up for no good reason, and then Jacques Villeneuve wasn't looking on the way into the pits, and he was held up by him as well."



"There was a leak in the pneumatic system on the engine, so we recharged it at the second pit stop. It might have been able to get to the end, but we decided we needed to recharge it again, and that's why he came in a third time. We could see it on the telemetry."



"We'd have done the same thing. Basically he wouldn't have finished the race."



"Maybe it would have been better to change them, but it was a decision that was taken on the pit wall, and it didn't affect Ralf's position. We thought we'd be changing tyres, but it was clear that they were better when they were more worn. So Sam Michael decided to keep him on the same set of tyres. It was a good decision."



"Yes, it was a very strong performance. It's a pity for him that he wasn't able to follow it up with at least a second place. But he was on the podium, and it's better than Magny-Cours."



"Much stronger. We're not pretending we're as good as Ferrari this year, we're clearly not, but we're better than we were last year, and we hope we'll be even better next year."



"I think the Michelin tyre was pretty good, and I don't think the difference between tyres was important. What we were seeing was the difference between cars rather then tyres, I think."



"We're certainly behind, and we're obviously working on closing that gap. We've had some races where we've been strong this year, and most races not so strong. What we've got to look at is consistency as well."

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