Champion-elect champing at the bit

DOMINANT championship leader Michael Schumacher is positively impatient for the action to get underway this weekend, which could well see him seal his fourth world championship. The German is in a mood to wrap things up with four races to go so that the Ferrari team can focus on consolidating its third consecutive constructors' title over the remainder of the season, and expects the Ferrari to fly on the tight and fiddly Hungaroring, F1's sole visit to eastern Europe.

"I have already said several times that our car does actually look good on all track profiles and I therefore count on us being right at the front again in Budapest," the defending champion said. "With Ferrari's aerodynamic package, a development of the one from Monaco, I do believe we have reason to be confident. I am really looking forward to the race in Budapest. It's time that thing's start moving again. I am really geared up to driving now."

Schumacher has sat out the enforced summer break in the company of his wife and children, which he believes has been a boon before the race to the end of the season. "I have spent all that time with Corinna and the children, and we have had a real family holiday together. We did a lot of things and had a lot of fun.

"And then once I went parachuting, and that was also great. Apart from that, I have of course been carrying on with my daily fitness training, like cycling. And I have to say that mentally the break has been great as well, I feel very much rested and refreshed, both mentally and physically."

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Stories: AUGUST 17, 2001
CHAMPION-ELECT CHAMPING AT THE BIT