MAY 22, 2001
Schumacher warns of opening lap problems
MICHAEL SCHUMACHER fears that the opening lap of the Monaco Grand Prix could be littered with carnage after he expressed his concerns over the launch control problems.
Four drivers were left on the Austrian Grand Prix grid during a problematic opening in which the safety car was deployed, and Schumacher believes this weekend's Monte Carlo race will have another incident-packed start.
"It is always dangerous if a car stops on the grid," Schumacher said. "It looked a bit strange in Austria because four cars stopped at the same time and all had the same problem.
"In previous years, anyone could have a problem as well as now with these systems. But people will have to be a lot more careful in this year's race.
"I think in general, when the systems are working, you will have less problems percentage-wise with the electronics, but they are not working correctly and anything could happen at the start."
Schumacher backed Ferrari's decision to opt against the introduction of traction control at the start of the season and said that the Spanish Grand Prix was too early for its arrival.
"Nobody was prepared for it, but in the future everybody will be," he said. "The systems are a step forward in terms of safety but it takes time.
"I think now probably everybody understands why we acted like this. Even to wait for four races doesn't seem to be enough right now."
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