July 11, 2004


That is, perhaps, what Kimi Raikonnen and Reubens Barrichelo have in mind after Michael Schumacher chalked up his tenth win in 11 starts this season; and his 80th career victory. Despite Kimi's brand new MP4-19B Mclaren car, the Ferrari team has once again outwitted the other teams by playing not just a superior car, but with an equally wise strategy as well.

Ferrari's strategy for Michael was very apparent once the green light was lighted up on race day. Although he was starting fourth because of his dismal qualifying run, a lot of people expected that he would quickly shoot to first or second place. He ran in that position for about the first 10 or so laps because he was carrying more than the usual amount of fuel. When he pitted on the 15th lap and spent close to 9 seconds for the stop, it was obviously a 2-stop race strategy for Schumacher’s team, as opposed to Mclaren’s three pitstops strategy. When he pulled out of the pits on the 37th lap ahead of Kimi, there was no turning back for Michael Schumacher and the race was securely in his control, victory once again for the Ferrari team.

The only heart-stopping moment of the race was when Renault's Jarno Trulli crashed when he was negotiating the notorious Baker's bend on the 39th lap. With the bend curving nearly 180 degrees, riders were usually slowing from 7th to 4th gear as they negotiated the bend. Unfortunately, Trulli was not able to brake earlier and came into the bend at nearly 170 kilometers per hour. As he was applying pressure to his brakes, something in the drivetrain must've given up and caused his car to crash into the walls, causing a complete obliteration of his car's front wheels. His car rolled once before coming to a stop in the gravel and a couple of moments after, a collective sigh of relief was heard when he gave a thumbs-up to the crowd.

I expect that the German Grand Prix will be as equally exciting as this British Grand Prix has been. Mclaren will spend the next two weeks finetuning their new car to perfection. For Schumacher, it is expected that he will continue to drive harder for nothing can be sweeter than a hometown win. The man is clearly made of champion material. Now if only Kimi can work on that frustrating Nordic accent, it would sure be nice to watch his first trip to the winner's podium.

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