Honda website
Honda website

MAY 1, 2001

Schumacher slowed with suspension fears

FERRARI technical director Ross Brawn has revealed that fears for Michael Schumacher's suspension, added to his car's vibration problem with the tires, caused the triple world champion's slow pace in the Spanish Grand Prix.

McLaren's David Coulthard had thought Ferrari's post-race comments which based the problem solely on a tire vibration were masking the true facts, and Brawn has now admitted as much.

Brawn confirmed: "Rubens had a suspension failure, and we told Michael to drive easily and stay out of trouble. It is not usual and we will make some changes for Canada.

"There was a linkage in the rear suspension that broke (on Barrichello's car)," explained Brawn. "The part used was quite new and we have to take it back to get a metallergic test to work out what went wrong.

"We measure all the forces on the car and we have a maximum load the suspension can take and we never went above 40 percent of what it can take. I don't think it had anything to do with traction control.

Brawn also added that Schumacher's tire problem, which worsened during the race, also baffled the Italian team.

"Until we get the car out we are not sure," said Brawn when asked of the problem. "There was a vibration on the tires which was getting worse and worse and we considered a new set of tires but there was no way of recovering it."