The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Williams chalk out team strategy

Hockenheim: Williams team bosses have admitted that they will use team orders as the world championship fight goes down to the wire this season — but only if one of their drivers is out of contention.

Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya is now just six points behind world championship leader Michael Schumacher and 12 ahead of teammate Ralf Schumacher after winning the German Grand Prix here Sunday.

Williams technical director Patrick Head Monday admitted that when one driver is not in a position to mathematically win the title the team will be forced to use team orders to help their championship cause.

“Our agreements with both drivers is clear and accepted by both,” said Head. “They are free to race each other, but not in a manner which puts the team result at risk, until one has no numerical possibility to win the championship. Then we request one to assist the other.

“This is not an ideal position for the team, but it is the basis on which we employ our drivers.”

Williams team principal Frank Williams described Montoya’s performance as “a very skilful demonstration of race-craft” and the team is confident they will continue to have edge over Ferrari in the remaining four races of the season.

They are just two points behind their Italian rivals and cannot risk any collisions between their two drivers if they fight each other with their cars well ahead of the rest of the field.

But the team’s chief operations engineer Sam Michael believes Williams may not be able to introduce team tactics because their drivers are so evenly matched that both will be in with a championship chance late in the season. “Juan Pablo has finished second to Ralf in recent races but has not been that far behind,” said Michael. (AFP)

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