MAY 18, 2001
Di Montezemolo backs team orders decision
LUCA DI MONTEZEMOLO, president of Ferrari, has defended the team's decision to impose team orders in Sunday's Austrian Grand.
Rubens Barrichello was forced to move over and allow Michael Schumacher to finish second at the A1-Ring. The Brazilian was upset at the orders, but Di Montezemolo said the only way the Barrichello would have stayed in front was if he was leading.
"It would have been different if he had been in the lead and then no one would have touched him," said Di Montezemolo. "The difference between second and third places doesn't change anything.
"I think that Barrichello's anger had little to do with team orders. There have always been team orders, from Fangio with Enzo Ferrari to McLaren in the first race of the season three years ago.
"Barrichello does well not to get angry and instead to think of winning soon, because if he does get angry it just makes the job twice as hard."
Meanwhile, Schumacher has taken his comments back on Williams' Juan Pablo Montoya after he said his criticism of the Colombian over an incident in the Austrian race was harsh.
"Having watched the race on television and seen what happened, I can say that it was less serious than I had thought at the time," said Schumacher.
"I want to make it clear that, in my opinion it was a normal race incident, as indeed I said later on Sunday night. It has to be said that, when you sit in the car you don't get the overview of the situation, which you can have looking from outside."
But Montezemolo believes Schumacher would have won the race comfortably. "Schumacher could have won but for the incident with Montoya," said Di Montezemolo. "And I think it could have been quite an easy win."
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