Michael Schumacher wins his 57th Grand Prix ahead of
Juan Pablo Montoya and David Coulthard. Nick Heidfeld, Felipe Massa and Heinz
Harald Frentzen make the top 6.
As expected Michael Schumacher won the race with relative
ease ending up over 35 seconds over Juan Pablo Montoya. A number of other
drivers however had major dramas during the race.
Even before the start of the race, the Minardi team decided to withdraw from
the race after suffering from 3 wing failures during the weekend.
Rubens Barrichello couldn't get his car going at the formation lap and despite
being attended to by the mechanics in the pit lane he had to retire making it
his 4th retirement this season.
The race started with Michael Schumacher getting away cleanly with Ralf
Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya behind. Jenson Button starting from 6th on
the grid managed to get ahead of Kimi Raikkonen at the start but Raikkonen
took his place back at the first corner.
The order after the first lap was Michael Schumacher leading Ralf Schumacher
and Juan Pablo Montoya. Raikkonen, Button and Coulthard made the top 6.
Michael Schumacher started to build a gap to Ralf Schumacher immediately
showing the pace he had all weekend.
Pedro de la Rosa spun out of the race on the third lap while Kimi Raikkonen
lost his rear wing on the 5th lap and Giancarlo Fisichella retired in the pits
a lap later.
5 laps later and the second Jordan of Takuma Sato retires as a result of a
The first round of pit stops started on lap 24 with Michael
leading Ralf Schumacher by over 17 seconds.
Michael Schumacher kept the lead following the first round of pit stops and
Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya maintained their positions. Ralf
Schumacher though appeared to have made a mistake and run wide damaging the
front wing and was forced to pit.
The order after Ralf's incident was Michael Schumacher ahead of Juan Pablo
Montoya and Jenson Button. Coulthard was 4th ahead of Trulli and Heidfeld.
Jenson Button appeared to be struggling after his first stop and on lap 35
Coulthard managed to take 3rd and a couple of laps later Button lets his
team-mate Jarno Trulli through.
The order for the top 6 remains until the 2nd round of pit
stops. Meanwhile Ralf Schumacher struggling in 13th place pits again and gets
another front wing.
At the second round of pit stops Michael Schumacher kept the
lead but drama for Montoya as he gets the all clear signal from the lollipop
man but the fuel hose was still engaged. Montoya hits one of the mechanics
luckily though the mechanic isn't seriously injured.
Jenson Button in 5th still struggling pits while defending his position from
Heidfeld. They leave the pits together and were side by side exiting the pit
lane. Heidfeld managed to pass Button at the first corner.
Order following the 2nd round of pit stops, Michael
Schumacher leading Juan Pablo Montoya and David Coulthard. Trulli, Heidfeld
and Button make the top 6.
Jenson Button continued to struggle dropping 6th place to Massa and a few laps
from the end Trulli experiences problems and drops out of the points as well
allowing both Heidfeld and Massa from the Sauber team as well as Heinz Harald
Frentzen to move into the points.
So Michael Schumacher won his 4th race of the season (the
3rd in a row) ahead of Juan Pablo Montoya and David Coulthard. Nick Heidfeld,
Felipe Massa and Heinz Harald Frentzen made the top 6.
Jacques Villeneuve was the only Honda runner to finish and for the second race
in a row finishes just outside the points with McNish and Salo in 8th and 9th
respectively. Trulli was classified 10th despite pulling into the pits 2 laps
down while Ralf Schumacher was classified 11 also 2 laps down and Jenson
Button was 12th and 5 laps down.
Michael Schumacher with 44 points extends his championship
lead to 11 points over Juan Pablo Montoya with 23 points who takes second
place from his team-mate Ralf Schumacher with 20 points. David Coulthard is
4th with 9 points ahead of Jenson Button with 8.
Michael Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya keep their records
intact with 5 out of 5 finishes all of which in the points. Jenson Button has
for the first time this season failed to score although he was classified as a
finisher albeit 5 laps down.
On the other side, Olivier Panis and Enrique Bernoldi continue their disastrous
record of not finishing a race out of 5 starts. While Fisichella and
Barrichello have now failed to finish in 4 races out of 5. It is particularly
frustrating for Barrichello whose team-mate has finished 5 out of 5 and
winning 4 of them!
In the Constructors' Championship, Ferrari with 50 points
lead Williams with 43 while McLaren are in 3rd place with 13 points ahead of
both Renault and Sauber with 8 points each.
With the exception of BAR and Jordan (both powered by Honda
engines), all the teams have scored so far this season.