Ross Brawn Q&A

With the notable exception of Eddie Irvine's win in 1999, Ferrari has not had a very good time in Austria, and it remains the only race on the current schedule that Michael Schumacher hasn't won. If anything, the team felt relieved to escape with a second, a third and 10 points, especially when you bear in mind that both drivers made bad starts and that Michael was all but run off the road by Juan Pablo Montoya while contesting the lead. The inevitable swap of positions at the end may not have gone down well with Rubens Barrichello, but with the championship the only thing that really matters, giving Michael two extra points seemed a logical decision. Adam Cooper heard Ross Brawn's views on a dramatic race

Ross Brawn Q&A



"We've got to investigate why, but fundamentally it was a malfunction of the launch control system. The difficulty is that, like everyone, we're gaining more experience. There's something unusual here with the grip levels, which quite clearly affected other people as well."



"Well, what happened here was strange. Everyone practises in the pitlane, and gets used to their systems. The grid was so different from the pitlane, and that's why I think so many people had problems."



"A little bit. We had to make a choice between Michael and Rubens, and Rubens was in the best position. That was as far as we could go..."



"Bigger fuel tank or smaller fuel consumption. It's impossible to judge. The right strategy here was to go as fast as they could. They followed the right strategy and it paid off for them. We've got to examine if we can improve our situation, because we've got a couple of races coming up where it will be just as critical. There are lots of ifs and buts - F1 is 'if' spelt backwards, as everyone knows! But I think if Michael had managed to get a break then he would have built enough lead to have been OK. But he didn't."



"It would have been nice if he had! But no..."



"Maybe later in the year. Not now."



"The crucial bit was the start. We made such a cock-up of the start. We really created our own situation thereafter, because Michael was very quick, and we just didn't use it today. The first thing was the start, and the other thing was what Montoya did. I think it was a bit stupid for him to go off and take Michael with him. There's no point in that. He was so obsessed with stopping Michael go past that they both went off, and he lost a load of positions as well, so that wasn't a very good judgement. I've no problem with drivers being hard in terms of fighting for positions, but that was a manoeuvre which took both of them off, so it was pointless. He screwed up as well."



"Yes, and I think he had found a way by. But Montoya didn't agree! I wouldn't say frustrated, but we knew they [the Michelins] would come good later on. They seemed to have this pretty horrible period between 10 and 20 laps into the race, and then you could see he was getting strong again. That's why Montoya was a bit foolish really. Although the car broke down if he hadn't have done that he would have been a strong position for a second or third place."



"I'm not surprised there's criticism. It's the way we want to run the team."



"He's very competitive, Rubens, and he'd driven a great race. He was a bit upset that he didn't win. There was a crucial bit of the race where we couldn't do enough to win the race, and he was very frustrated about that. He'd driven very well. It's a very physical and emotional experience, a race, so I fully understand the way he felt."



"I think that's something we'll keep to ourselves..."

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