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Home > Sports > Formula One > Reuters > Report

Ralf favoured by Williams, moans Montoya

Alastair Himmer in Shanghai | September 25, 2004 20:50 IST

Juan Pablo Montoya has complained that Williams are showing favouritism to his team mate Ralf Schumacher in the build-up to the Chinese Grand Prix.

There is no love lost between the fiery Colombian and German Schumacher, who will make his race return in Shanghai on Sunday following a near-fatal crash at the U.S. Grand Prix in June.

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"This week has been really tough," Montoya said on Saturday.

"I think Ralf got here and I think they moved the focus out of my car a little bit. It's a bit frustrating because I'm trying really hard to get good results."

Both men will leave Williams at the end of the season, Montoya joining McLaren and Schumacher -- younger brother of seven-times world champion Michael -- bound for Toyota.

Montoya, who has had a frosty relationship with Ralf, grudgingly welcomed his team mate back after the German suffered two spinal fractures in Indianapolis.

"Good for him," shrugged Montoya. "I don't really care who my team mate is, to be honest. It's good for him to be back.

"We're both leaving at the end of the year so it will be good for him to get back in the car before the end of the season."


The Colombian has struggled with his set-up at the twisty Shanghai circuit and could only finish 10th fastest in Saturday's qualifying.

"The car hasn't really behaved well all week," said Montoya, who celebrated his 29th birthday on the Great Wall of China last Monday.

"I have had trouble with the car all weekend and that hasn't made my life any easier. We worked quite hard to develop the car and we're still not very competitive."

Montoya has had a disappointing year and is currently sixth in the drivers' championship on 42 points, 94 behind Michael Schumacher.

"We got this problem, we got this problem, we got this problem," lamented Montoya, who has three Grand Prix victories to his name.

"We were miles off (pole position) for this one. Today, it was really hard to drive. Hopefully, we can change it tomorrow."

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