Schumacher dismisses DC's Friday speed

Michael Schumacher has dismissed David Coulthard's flying start to the crucial Belgian Grand Prix as the McLaren man set fastest time on the first day of practice

Schumacher dismisses DC's Friday speed

The Scot's blistering 1m53.398s best in the morning session was eight-tenths of a second faster than Schumacher in second place.

And even as the pace stepped up in the afternoon, Coulthard's team mate Mika Hakkinen, the current points leader, could not get within half a second as the German failed to improve his time and fell to fifth.

"Look at the times between Mika and myself and forget the rest," said Schumacher at the end of the first day's practice. "You only just have to look at the other lap times David did. He did not do another lap like that one."

Coulthard, who won this race last year, was mystified by the double champion's attitude and refused to get into a new slanging match.

"I don't know what Michael's thought process is that is saying that," said the Scot. "The reason I did not do a lot of flat-out laps is because one of my tyres received a small cut.

"The only two times I am concerned about anyway are the ones after qualifying and in the race. They are what count. I am happy the way the weekend has started.

"I have won here before," he added, "and believe I can do so again this year."

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