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Has David Coulthard ruined his chances ?  

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At the French GP Coulthard made a critical mistake by speeding in the pit lane. At the British GP he assumed that Trulli would slow down as he is fighting for the championship.
Those 2 incidents will probably haunt Coulthard as the reason for not taking the championship challenge to the wire.
Up until the French GP, Coulthard was so determined to overcome the weaknesses of his car and twice when he was relegated to the back of the grid he fought back and scored some points. Ironically though when he does get the car that could beat Michael's Ferrari, it is his turn to throw away points.

His incident with Trulli at the start of the British GP is considered a racing incident similar to those we saw earlier in the year when Barrichello sent Ralf Schumacher and Heinz Harald Frentzen into spins. This time though it was critical for Coulthard to score points and even if Trulli managed to pass Coulthard at the start, David would have been able to get past him a few laps later.
Eddie Jordan was frustrated with the incident as he was hoping his driver Trulli would be able to score some points for his team but also because he was hoping that Coulthard could challenge Michael in the championship. He said "Yesterday it was equally important for us and David to score points "

Ron Dennis took the side of his driver and claimed that even if a driver is fighting for the championship, he should not give in and said "One must always remember that a driver doesn’t win races from having a timid approach when faced with split second decisions."

Should Coulthard have been more careful at the first corner ? Should Trulli have yielded ? Has David Coulthard ruined his chances ? Have Your Say (What others are saying)

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What others are saying:

Its not over until the end. Go West Team! You have to love the SAFETY CAR! - Ed - USA

N-onamus has touched on something here that is a very sore point. And I feel he is absolutely correct in that the penalties imposed on David and Ralph was very severe given the circumstances. Sure there must be penalties because a pit lane speed limit applies to everybody and if someone speeds he is getting an unfair advantage but a 10 second stop/go is very harsh as his advantage was not that much however much he was speeding. Why does the stewards not copy from CART and bring in a "Drive through" penalty in certain situations (such as pit lane speeding and one or two other transgressions). Still not quite appropriate but a whole lot better than 10 sec stop/go - Johan M - South Africa

I agree with Johan's Bottom line
DC has not ruined his chances, it was a combination of Trulli and Bernoldi. Plus I would also like to add that it seems to me that the race stewards are hell bent on making Formula1 even more boring than it already is, We had a race on our hands between Ralf and Michael they slap Ralf with a 10sec stop and go for crossing a white line I never even knew existed, David was looking like mounting a challenge to Michael at the French GP what do they do?, slap him with the same penalty for going 3mph over the pit lane speed limit, sometimes I think the car manufactures' breakaway series would be a blessing - N-onamus - Australia

FOR SURE he is just simply trying too hard, ok I understand his circumstances but if he wants a chance to win the title he has to get out of the Hakkinen owned and loved team to Williams or Jordan - Chris - Australia

I agree with Ron Dennis that races are not won from having a timid approach. That does not mean that a race driver should never give way and sometimes it is better to give way. But in this instance Trulli was at fault. He was gaining on DC but upon entering the corner DC was on the outside and in front of Trulli (T's front tire connected DC's right rear tire). There was nowhere for DC to go and Trulli should have realised it. I think Trulli should have backed off and not the other way round. Trulli did not have a snowball's hope of making the corner without drifting to the outside and that would have meant into DC. After all is'nt this exactly what happened?. DC was on the outside with nowhere to go but still in front of Trulli.

Bottom line: DC has not ruined his chances, Trulli did it for him. 

As far as Mika is concerned, it is now a mathematical impossibility to win the title this year and he can be expected to assist David in his bid for the title which I think he will do (if McLaren gets to be in such a fortunate position). Mika is not such a bad guy.
(And I am not even a DC, MH or McLaren fan!!) - Johan M - South Africa

I agree somewhat with GOP from India. To my recollection Mika Hakkinen has yet to publicly state that if he is ahead of David Coulthard, he will give way to him. If Coulthard had a good start I think he would have finished in the top two. It would have depended on Mika either letting him through for the win, or a mistake, for him to have won the race - The Meanest - New Zealand

I think its lucky for the McLaren team that David crashed 'cos Mika was all determined to win and would have refused the team orders, which would have caused
lots of embarrassment to the team. David probably had little chance to win, his start was bad and the best result could be a 3-4th finish, and that'd get him max 4 points. Does not make much difference - GOP - India

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