Brave face from Barrichello

AFTER tearfully handing over his hard-earned second place to Michael Schumacher at the Austrian Grand Prix, Ferrari's 'equal number one' Rubens Barrichello has broken his self-imposed silence on the matter.

In an abrupt about-face, Barrichello, who led 31 of the 71 laps and deferred to Schumacher only on the finish line, put a brave face on the situation. So much so in fact that despite Ferrari's decision and his evident anger once the race finished, Barrichello said he had no problems.

"After the race we talked and we had different opinions and everyone is entitled to have their own opinion," Barrichello said. "That does not mean I do not get on well with Jean and Ross. Working with Ross is great and we even managed to have a little joke about the last race, when we had our Sunday night de-brief with Michael and all the engineers.

"Going down the check list of every aspect of the car, I was asked how the radio worked. I replied: "too good!" In the race I never considered pretending I couldn't hear the request to move over, because the Ferrari radio works too well!"

That much was evident to viewers of Italy's RAI Television network, for whom the pit-to-car radios were unintentionally left on and they were allowed to hear Todt's increasingly-frantic calls for Barrichello to step aside, drawing worldwide censure from the media and public alike.

"Do you think people in F1 only think about sport?" said Todt in an angry rebuttal of allegations that the public and the sport itself had been cheated by the tactic. "You don't think that there is some commercial interest? You have a big motor car industry that wants to win. We are there to try and deliver the win. We are paid and chosen, rightly or wrongly, for the strategy we build."

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