Schumacher targets title win

An ecstatic Michael Schumacher set his sights on the world championship after winning the opening race of the season in Melbourne.

The double champion set himself on the path to his third world title having led all but seven laps of the 58 lap Grand Prix.

He also took the first step on a long road to becoming the first Ferrari champion since 1979 saying: "Since the first time I sat in the car I believed 'this is the car to battle for the world championship with'. And today I proved I was right.

"The car is just fantastic. After five years of battling to be at the front for Ferrari things are looking great for us this year.

"When Mika was talking about his pole position on Saturday I thought ' let him celebrate this because I will be celebrating victory tomorrow. And I am'.

"We can be competitive for the rest of the season. The car is competitive and reliable and I am looking forward to all of the season, we will be competitive everywhere and we have developments coming already to make us even faster.

"It looks like it is going to be a great season for Ferrari."

The German inherited the lead on lap 19 when Mika Hakkinen retired with engine problems and led all but seven of the remaining 39 laps to the chequered flag.

The only slight dilemma he had during the race was when he came across slowing on the circuit.

"I wondered what the team might have told him to do but he went into the pits so I was able to carry on after that," he added.

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