Wednesday May 16th, 2001
Former racer Gerhard Berger, now BMW's motorsports boss, has revealed that Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya reminds him of triple world champion Michael Schumacher, and said that the Colombian is shaping up to become one of the best drivers.
"He reminds me of Michael," said Berger. "But there are so many. We remember Mansell, we remember Piquet, Rosberg. I mean, I just think he is one of the top guys."
Montoya has led in Brazil and last weekend in Austria but although he has already reached the podium with second place in Barcelona, he has failed to finish in every other race.
He has already seen the highs and lows of Formula One in his first six races, and Berger warned Montoya he must be able to cope with such extremes as the season continues.
"We are going to have a lot of ups and downs this year," said Berger. "We are at a very early stage and Michelin is in their first year back and so I wouldn't expect anything different. I think that they (the Michelin tyres) were a weak point here but we saw some races the other way around. It will be next year before they are consistent on all tracks.
"We have to improve the car in some areas but you don't go to the first row if it is not right - although we know some areas where we are a bit weak. I think we have to get more technical reliability."