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 Results 2004 Racereport

Racereport


Schumacher Storms to Record Win, Ferrari Clinch Title

World Champion Michael Schumacher claimed a record breaking 12th win of the season in the Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday as he secured a sixth consecutive Constructors' Championship for Ferrari.

Schumacher, who started from pole position, led every lap of the race and obliterated the field to claim his 82nd career win as Barrichello followed him home to hand Ferrari their seventh one-two finish of the season.

The convincing victory, on a track that had been expected to hand Ferrari's rivals their greatest chance of victory, demonstrated the dominance that the Italian team has enjoyed this season.

And the team celebrated their astonishing continued success by showing their pit board to Schumacher with the words "World Number 1" in yellow letters as he crossed the line victorious.

After extending his lead over Barrichello in the drivers' championship to 38 points with 50 remaining the German now sets his sights on securing his record seventh title with victory at the next race in Belgium.

Behind the scarlet steamroller Spaniard Fernando Alonso claimed his fourth podium finish of the season with third place for Renault, who are second in the championship, but it was not enough to stop Ferrari from sealing the title.

Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya, in the revised Williams which ran with a new nose, finished fourth ahead of the BAR-Honda duo of Briton Jenson Button, in fifth, and Japan's Takuma Sato, in sixth.

Antonio Pizzonia, in his second race for Williams as a replacement for the injured Ralf Schumacher, claimed his second successive seventh place with Italian Giancarlo Fisichella securing the final point for Sauber.

Schumacher made a clean get-away from pole position to lead into the first corner as Barrichello held off the fast-starting Renault of Alonso, who was fifth on the grid, to claim second.

There was plenty of movement amongst the challengers behind with Montoya making a strong start to move past both BAR-Hondas and slot into fourth from seventh and Sato dropping down to eighth.

Trulli gained three places to move up to sixth behind Button and Kimi Raikkonen moved up from tenth on the grid to seventh as Minardi's home hope Zsolt Baumgartner slotted onto the back of the field after starting from the pitlane.

In the middle of the pack Ricardo Zonta, making his race debut for Toyota after the team dropped Cristiano da Matta, was knocked into a spin in the melee and dropped to the back.

Alonso made his first stop, from third, at the end of lap nine as Schumacher put in another fastest lap to extend his lead to 5.0 seconds over Barrichello and 15.5 over his Renault rival.

Schumacher pitted at the end of lap 11, one lap after Barrichello, and came out in the lead but McLaren driver Raikkonen's race ended at the end of lap 14th when he pulled into the pits to retire for the seventh time this season.

By the time the first round of stops was over at the end of lap 17 Schumacher held a 6.8-second lead over Barrichello and a 20.3-second advantage over third-placed Alonso.

But it was not all plain sailing for Ferrari as several mechanics were forced to work on a problem with a fuel hose in the pits before their cars were due in for their second stops.

Felipe Massa retired on lap 23 and Webber spun at turn nine on lap 26 then Zonta's debut ended early when he coasted to halt on lap 33 to post the third retirement of the race.

But there were no problems for Ferrari as their second set of stops went smoothly. Schumacher retained his lead and extended it to 9.9 seconds over Barrichello by lap 35.

Italian Jarno Trulli parked by the side of the pit wall on lap 43 when his Renault ground to a halt and Italian Jordan driver Giorgio Pantano stopped on lap 51.

But the metronomic reliability of the Ferrari duo continued and Schumacher and Barrichello clocked down the laps to the finish as technical director Ross Brawn and team boss Jean Todt smiled from the pit wall in satisfaction.

Source: atlasf1.com


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