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27-Sep: At the Friday press conference for the United States GP, Michael Schumacher is hoping to be able to race his team-mate at the US GP but admitted that the decision remained with Jean Todt and said "It was obvious that we wanted to drive in a way that Rubens secured his second position and he supported me in winning the championship as much as he could, so it was natural that I would support him in his achievement. I believe, if my calculation is right, if I would win this race, then it would automatically mean for him a second, which means that - maybe Jean can say more about this - we can race free."
Michael was again asked on his thoughts on the Formula 1 track at Indy and said "I think we have talked a lot of times about the circuit. It's a circuit with a big name because of the oval and what the Indy cars are doing here. And we have a compromised circuit on the same package, which is not a big challenge, for example, like we have in Suzuka or Spa. But if you see what has been possible to do, they have done a good job."
When asked about Lauda's comments that he would be bored if he's won as much as Michael, he said "There is obviously a difference between him and me because I'm not bored yet. The motivation simply comes out from the competition you find every weekend on the road. Because I have had races that have been tough and I have had races that have been easy. But there hasn't been a constant situation either way, and that's what is the good thing about Formula One. You never know what the next race will be like."

Ralf Schumacher talked about his move on Montoya at the first chicane at the start of the Italians GP and said "That's Formula One racing at the end of the day. I don't know, I'm surprised. Usually I would be pointed out not to overtake people. So maybe that's why. But, you know, I try my best and if there's a chance, as I usually say, and I see the chance, I take it as I took there. It was very optimistic there. Because of the way the circuit is designed there, it worked out."
When asked about his effort tailing off towards the end of the season, he said "I'm just trying to do my job as good as possible. Certainly if you look back to last year in qualifying, or maybe in general for the last few races, you could say they weren't too good, but then I still ended up on the podium, most of them. But I'm simply trying to do a good job all the way through."

Jacques Villeneuve indicated that he was really looking forward to next year's BAR and said "I think next year we'll finally have a Formula One car and that is a very nice thing.
You know, we have a big heavy car and then that's not up to Formula One standards. Honda has been stepping up, also, and we're starting to see the effect of it. Mainly it will be next year so I'm very confident for next year."
When asked about how he stays motivated despite not being competitive he said "I don't know. It's become a habit after a few years of fighting at the back. So I don't know, it just happens naturally. I love racing, you know, that's why I got involved in racing. Having won one championship is definitely not enough. So I just want to be ready for the day that the car finally gets good. You have to be on top of it at every moment because even in an uncompetitive season, you never know when there might be one opportunity and you can't miss it."
As for the track, Villeneuve said "The layout itself is not very, very exciting. There is not really an exciting corner, it's just a difficult track to drive because it's never used and it's very slippery asphalt on top of it. So it's very difficult to get the balance right. But if you're lucky enough that Friday morning, you start and the car is working, normally you're looking good for the rest of the weekend."

Jean Todt didn't confirm that his drivers are free to race and said "At the beginning of the season we had the first objective which was Ferrari manufacturers' world champion and it seemed like Michael had better chances to be driver champion. So the team did support him as much as it could. And once it was achieved, the second goal was to allow Rubens to win the second position. And now Rubens is leading the third by 17 points. And definitely if Michael is winning this race, then Rubens would be second and we will achieve the result. But I mean it's many other cases which can happen. So once we see what is happening in qualifying, we will decide what is in the best interest for Ferrari."
Todt was asked about Ferrari's dominance and how that is affect Formula 1, he said "I will say at the moment our dominant position is due to different factors: Strong team, fantastic drivers, fantastic technical partners, and mainly I'm talking about Bridgestone who is supplying us great tires. I know cycles have happened since years in Formula One, I mean Michael is on the right and on the left they have been leading this situation fortunately for them at the moment. After many, many years of hard time for Ferrari, it's happening for Ferrari and we know it will not last forever. But as long as it can last we will do everything we can because we are very motivated. If we would have not won a race since 50 years to go along and try to be still successful altogether, we have a great team."

Frank Williams is hoping upset Ferrari's dominance soon and said "I've always thought the best racing cars come out of the most creative minds, not necessarily from the most technology. And I guess Jean's in possession of the greatest car presently. This will change, we certainly hope so, Ron and I do at least."
Frank praised his test driver Antonio Pizzonia despite his disappointing performance in F3000 and said "He has disappointed himself in Formula 3000 and surprised us at the same time, but we rate him very highly and he should have a strong career in Formula One, there's no question about that.
He is quick enough certainly and I think a good enough racer to be in Formula One. He is quite good at overtaking."

Ron Dennis explained the situation with the Illmor acquisition by Mercedes and said "It's taken a great deal of time to arrive at this particular decision. But it's just one of the things that probably reflects how committed DaimlerChrysler is and, of course, McLaren to winning the World Championship, and any decision we take together - and that was a significant decision - is carefully thought through and obviously taken with a purpose to be better on the track. And we have DaimlerChrysler developing a significant resource in Stuttgart, have over another 125 engineers now that have been assembled over the last few months, and the acquisition of Ilmor is the last part in significantly raising the efforts to have the best available engine in the pit lane, and that's just one of the many decisions and changes that have been made."
On the demonstration run that Sarah Fisher will do in the spare McLaren, Ron said "It's just an opportunity for her to sample Formula One. It was a request made by one of our sponsors, by Tag Heuer and I discussed it with Bernie. We felt it would be good for the American public and it was just something that was possible. So we agreed to do it."
And on what McLaren needs to do to topple Ferrari, Ron said "There tends to be a certain biorhythm to the performance of Grand Prix teams. I often think, have we lost the expertise that's required to win races and win world championships? I don't think we have. I think Jean and his colleagues have obviously done an incredibly good job, and I take some comfort from the fact that I think our team has done a pretty poor job. So I think we make them actually look better than - not that they are, but they certainly look better because of our own efforts not being as they should be.
And, of course, you can then inevitably perhaps pose the next question, which is, well, what do you think you've done wrong? And then you get into trying to break down the performance elements of a Grand Prix car and which bits you feel are strong and which bits you feel are weak. But the fact is that, you know, that there is never a magic ingredient in a Grand Prix team or a Grand Prix car. It's the sum of approximately 20,000 components and the challenge for all the designers and both, you know, in each of the disciplines is try and make each of those components slightly better every year so that when you actually put them together, the sum of all of those components gives you a performance advantage.

So there's never any magic. And I don't think it's resource-driven in respect of certainly the three teams that we represent. I think we all have excellent resources. I think it's inevitable that your resources move ahead. I mean Frank is not building a new wind tunnel because he thinks he has the best one at the moment, that's for sure and, you know, as was the case with Jean and Ferrari who have enjoyed the benefits of a new wind tunnel for three or four years now and we're just reaping the benefits of ours. Resources and facilities, you tend to leapfrog all the way through and that's what we're trying desperately hard to do, as is Frank. You're trying to take not an incremental step, but a quantum step, and that means you'll push down various paths which are not going to give instant technical gratification. It takes time to come back on top. You've got to have the stamina and focus, determination, budget, resources and all of these things and you just have to keep powering forward. In the end, people who have won in the past tend to win in the future."

27-Sep: What the teams and drivers said following Friday practice at Indy ... Report

27-Sep: US GP 2nd Friday Practice Session: Michael Schumacher continues to set the pace ahead of Eddie Irvine and David Coulthard. Kimi Raikkonen, Jacques Villeneuve and Heinz Harald Frentzen make the top 6 ... Timed Results ... Report ... Notes 

27-Sep: US GP 1st Friday Practice Session: Michael Schumacher sets the fastest time of the session ahead of Giancarlo Fisichella and Pedro de la Rosa. Eddie Irvine, Juan Pablo Montoya and Takuma Sato make the top 6 ... Timed Results ... Report ... Notes

27-Sep: "It is all over!" is the title of the 27th issue from the Diagnosis and Prognosis Series for the 2002 season. In this issue, the Heretic looks at the upcoming US Grand Prix - Issue 27

United States Formula 1 Grand Prix Schedule:

Session Time (Local / GMT) - Current local time
Friday Practice Session 1
Friday Practice Session 2
Saturday Practice Session 1
Saturday Practice Session 2
Qualifying Session
Warm-up Session
11 AM Indianapolis Time / 4 PM GMT
1 PM Indianapolis Time / 6 PM GMT
9:00 AM Indianapolis Time / 2:00 PM GMT 
10:15 AM Indianapolis Time / 3:15 PM GMT
1:00 PM Indianapolis Time / 6:00 PM GMT
8:30 AM Indianapolis Time / 1:30 PM GMT
1:00 PM Indianapolis Time / 6:00 PM GMT
Go to the United States GP Page

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