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Todt on Indy, Massa and engine homologation

NEWS STORY
03/07/2006

In the roller-coaster ride that is Ferrari's 2006 championship season, this has been one of the good weekends, indeed, it has been one of the very best weekends. Consequently, Jean Todt is wearing a broad grin as he enters the room for the post-race media brief..

So, what are his feelings about today? "We are very pleased about the result," he smiles. "We haven't found ourselves in such a strong situation from the beginning of the weekend for a long time and we saw immediately that we were strong.

"Yesterday, once we saw that we had the two Ferraris on the front row, we definitely had a few questions," he admits. "The question marks were mainly over reliability and degradation of the tyres.

"We were reliable, which was important because it was the second race with the engine and the Bridgestone tyres were fantastic. You can see the overall result, and even if you see the quickest lap time during the race, you can see how strong the Bridgestones were this weekend."

It's been said that in light of last year's shambles, Michelin was a little conservative with its tyre choices for Indianapolis, while Bridgestone took a step forward.

"Honestly, I don't know if they were conservative or not," says the Frenchman, "but I have always commented that if you want to win a race, you need to have everything put together, and we managed to have everything put together which gave the final result. And if we manage to put everything as well in some of the next races we can hope to achieve the same result.

"However, if we don't, as has happened unfortunately too often this season, we cannot pretend to make a strong result. It's up to us."

So, following the Indy result, is there more confidence in the team, can Ferrari go forward from this and attack the championship? "You always feel stronger for at least ten days, until the next Grand Prix, if you finish first and second," he admits. "And then, if you see the classification, you wish you would feel stronger, because we are still far behind in the manufacturers' and the drivers' championships. At the moment, we are not the ones to feel stronger but we will do everything we can to improve the situation."

Why it didn't work in Montreal yet worked here? Is it just down to tyres or is there more?

"It's a combination," he replies, "a combination. In Montreal maybe we did not take the best strategy and we did not make the best job. That's all."

Nonetheless, it must be a big relief. It also helps that Michael gained six points against Alonso.

"It's good," he smiles. "So often this year he lost those points against him so this time it went on the good side for us."

When winning a race like this, does it make it slightly easier to sort out the problems, because there are one or two boxes that are ticked?

"Honestly, it makes it easier for the flight home," he smiles. "It's good, you have a good feeling, but tomorrow we will start again."

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