Montoya under fire for Schumacher move

When Juan Pablo Montoya got past Michael Schumacher, the world champion was left spinning in the gravel trap anxiously waving for help from the marshals in order to continue his race. Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn was fuming at the tactics of the Colombian. "It was mad of Montoya. He could have taken both of them off the circuit," said Brawn.-Pic. AP

Ferrari lashed out at Williams driver Juan Pablo Montoya after the Colombian collided with world champion Michael Schumacher at an incident-packed European Grand Prix.

Montoya passed the German on lap 43 of the 60-lap race, and went on to take second place behind teammate Ralf Schumacher.

But as he got past, Michael Schumacher was left spinning in the gravel trap anxiously waving for help from the marshals in order to continue his race.

The incident was examined by the stewards to see if Schumacher had benefited illegally by being pushed back onto the track before he went on to claim fifth place.

The clash left Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn fuming with the tactics of the Colombian. "It was mad of Montoya. He could have taken both of them off the circuit," said Brawn.

"It was a very crude overtaking move and he has done it several times before. He is not a classy driver in that respect."

However, Montoya, who has often been regarded as the natural successor to Schumacher's Ferrari seat once the five-time world champion retires, was unrepentant over the incident which happened at the circuit's last hairpin.

"In the corner he was very slow. We went down into the hairpin, he blocked the inside so I switched to the outside," said the Colombian.

"I thought I gave him plenty of room — I can't give him all the track."

The controversy took some of the shine of Ralf Schumacher's win, the fifth of his career and his first since the Malaysian Grand Prix in 2002.

"It's been a long time," admitted Schumacher who inherited the lead when pole-sitter Kimi Raikkonen was forced out of the race after 26 laps when the engine on his McLaren blew-up.

He had already passed his brother at the start to move into second spot behind the Finn.

"I've had two pole positions and couldn't turn them into a victory. So you see — even a bad driver can win a race! I simply had a good start, and for some reason Michael didn't. We gained half of the time we had lost to McLaren back, but they were very strong and if Kimi hadn't retired it would have been very difficult.

"We've taken an amazing step if you remember where we started the season. I can't remember a team turning it around so much. A one-two finish at the Ring — you can't top that."

Despite his problems, five-time world champion Michael Schumacher extended his lead over Raikkonen at the top of the standings to seven points, passing the career 1,000-point mark in the process.