Atlas F1 News Service

Ralf Surprised by Strong Showing

Friday June 22nd, 2001

Ralf Schumacher, todayRalf Schumacher and his Williams team demonstrated in Friday's practice for the European Grand Prix they will be serious contenders for another victory in Sunday's race following a strong performance today.

Schumacher, dominant winner of the Canadian Grand Prix two weeks ago, was third quickest right behind the two McLarens and in front of his brother Michael at the Nurburgring circuit. However, the young German was surprised with his performance.

"It was actually better than expected," said Schumacher. "We improved from the first session and the car felt quite good. It is good that my home Grand Prix is starting well."

It was a pleasing session for Juan Pablo Montoya too, the Colombian finishing sixth despite being thwarted by traffic problems when using new Michelin tyres.

"It was a good day when I evolved the car a lot so I am pretty happy," Montoya said. "It is not qualifying, but I had traffic on new tyres and I had people spinning in front of me in the first sector, so lost about half a second. My car is working well, we are making progress and finding the direction to go."

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