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Rubens opens up

NEWS STORY
18/08/2005

Having finally opted to 'break free' and leave Ferrari, Rubens Barrichello appears to have found his voice.

In the wake of the announcement that he has signed a "multi-year" deal with BAR, the Brazilian has finally opened up.

Asked why he stayed at Ferrari for so long, the Brazilian's response was refreshingly honest: "I didn't have anything better," he admitted.

"I don't' have any reason to leave on bad terms with the team," he said of the decision to leave, even though he still has a contract for a further season, "it's important to leave open doors. I came in smiling, and I intend to leave the team smiling."

However...

"I'm not a second driver, I fight for the best places," he continued. "At Ferrari all the attention is centred on the car that wins, and that happened more often with Michael's car, but that doesn't mean I didn't fight for my goals.

"If Michael wasn't at Ferrari all these years I would have already been World Champion," he added.

Having referred to his teammate, Rubens continued: "Michael has an enormous talent to give his maximum on his first lap," admitted the Brazilian. "He gets in the car and gives his maximum. For him, everything is everything, and he doesn't slow down. He's getting older, but he's getting better, too."

"I don't have any bad things to say about Michael," he added. "He has been very important at Ferrari, it was him who built the team and made what it is today."

Some believe that after years of being in Schumacher's shadow, the last straw came at Monaco, when the German passed Rubens on the last lap to take seventh.

"I always have been someone who fought for his ideals," said the Brazilian. "After the Monaco Grand
Prix I step out of the car and then I talked with Michael. But there was some nervousness in the air and some Italians reporter heard us, beginning the rumour that said that we had falling-out."

Asked when he first began talks with BAR regards 2006, he replied: "Everything happened after Silverstone, before there wasn't anything."

This is all very well, but Rubens' comments cut little ice, the fact is, he knew what he was getting in to.

On reflection, readers might like to check out the feature (Why Rubens, Why?) written by Pitpass editor Chris Balfe in May 2002. The article was written just hours after the Brazilian had signed a new multi-year deal with Ferrari, and two days before the infamous Austrian Grand Prix.

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