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Autosport: The Barrichello Puzzle

In our series of Best of 2006, this is Mark Hughes' column from Autosport Magazine, which was published on April 6th 2006.

These are troubled times for Rubens Barrichello. After six seasons in the support role to Michael Schumacher at Ferrari he came to Honda on absolutely equal terms to the incumbent Jenson Button. In fact for a time it looked like Rubens might even get to be the clear number one, with Button maybe obliged to fulfil his contract with Williams, leaving Barrichello to be supported by Takuma Sato. It didn't work out like that of course. In fact, so far it's not working out at all.

Although his problems adapting to the Honda only really became apparent once the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend was underway, he'd been protected by his team to an extent during winter testing. Then, while often nip and tuck as quick as Button on the timesheets, in reality they were usually on different programmes and within the team it was obvious that usually he was not quite on Button's pace.

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