Monday November 5th, 2001
Jaguar boss Niki Lauda expects World Champion Michael Schumacher to have an easy year next season as he believes the German is the favourite to clinch the title again.
"Michael did a perfect job and why should it be different next year," said Lauda on Jaguar's website. "Hakkinen has retired, and Coulthard, Montoya and Ralf and the rest have to catch up. I think on paper Michael has an easy year next year, but let's wait and see."
Quadruple World Champion and Ferrari driver Schumacher won this year's Championship with a 58-point advantage over McLaren's David Coulthard after scoring nine wins, also breaking the record for most number of points in a season with 123.
The German, who also won the 2000 title with Ferrari, is the best driver in the Formula One field, according to Lauda.
"Schumacher always delivers," added Lauda, who became Jaguar's boss after taking over from American Bobby Rahal this season. "He never makes mistakes, you can't expect more. He's the best. He's worth 0.5s a lap in qualifying and the race, which is a lot.
"Ferrari has perfect organisation, good teamwork, high moral, everything you need is there. All it has to do is improve the car, which it will be able to do."
Published at 11:16:54 GMT