Atlas F1 News Service

The Championship is Gone for Hakkinen, Says Rosberg

Thursday May 10th, 2001

Mika Hakkinen's manager Keke Rosberg believes the McLaren driver has no chance of winning the 2001 championship, after lying 32 points behind leader Michael Schumacher with five races gone.

Hakkinen, who has scored only four points so far this season, has not won a race since August last year, and reliability problems stopped him ten days ago when he led the Spanish Grand Prix until the final lap, when his McLaren suffered a clutch failure, handing the win to Schumacher.

Being 32 points adrift of Schumacher and 24 behind his own team mate David Coulthard, former world champion Rosberg believes Hakkinen's chances are over.

"I am a realistic person and the pressure is off Mika now, because the championship is gone," Rosberg told Autosport. "So now he can enjoy the season and get as many wins as he can"

"I probably wouldn't say it that bluntly to Mika well actually I did. But I don't think a driver sees it that bluntly. Let's put it this way: at least for the next six races he doesn't need to count points does he?

"He can just get on with it, drive as fast as he can and take it from weekend to weekend. All this championship talk can pass him by."

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