May 1996

TOURING CARS:- Rickard Rydell continued to impress in the Volvo 850 when he headed the times in testing around the new Silverstone international circuit. The super-quick Swede has now topped the test sheets at every circuit used by the British touring cars but has yet to win a race, lying third in the table. Championship leader Frank Biela was third in the Audi splitting the BMWs of Roberto Ravaglia and Jo Winkelhock. The Silverstone round takes place on May 19. Races five and six will be at Thruxton on Bank Holiday Monday (May 6).

 1 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850  1:25.061
 2 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i   1:25.156
 3 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    1:25.240
 4 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i   1:25.358
 5 A Menu       Swi Renault L  1:25.433
 6 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850  1:25.508
 7 W Hoy        GB  Renualt L  1:25.624
 8 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc  1:25.753
 9 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V 1:25.785
10 R Kaye       GB  Vauxhall C 1:25.959
11 P Radisich   NZ  Ford Mond  1:25.961
12 J Kaye       GB  Honda Acc  1:25.988
13 T Harvey     GB  Peugeot    1:26.188
14 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4    1:26.192
15 P Watts      GB  Peugeot    1:26.472

TOUR DE CORSE:- Philippe Bugalski piloted a two-wheel drive car to success in a round of the two-litre world championship for the time as he won the Tour of Corsica. Bugalski, driving a Renault, led for most of the three-day 1,050-km event but the fastest car was the Ford of Corsican Patrick Bernardini. Bernardini stopped twice to change punctures and lost two minutes when he hit a wall, eventually finishing fifth.

                           hr mins secs
 1 P Bugalski  Fr  Megane    6:18.36
 2 G Panizzi   Fr  Peugeot   @  2.07
 3 M Masarotto Fr  Subaru    @  2.23
 4 F Delecour  Fr  Peugeot   @  2.36
 5 P BernardiniIt  Ford      @  3.02
 6 F Chatriot  Fr  Peugeot   @  3.47
 7 A Mavarra   It  Subaru    @  7.20
 8 O Burri     Swi Subaru    @ 10:48
 9 C Balesi    Fr  Renault   @ 14.54
10 J Bagnotti  Fr  Megane    @ 16.39


Damon Hill will be desperate to re-assert himself after last week's slip-up at the Nurburgring - but the pressure is well and truly on at Imola. The championship race was beginning to look a one-horse affair after Hill's hat-trick start to the season. But teammate Jacques Villeneuve took his chance and defending champion Michael Schumacher suggested there is more to come as he powered to second. Hill, still with an 11-point cushion, will hardly be quaking in his boots at this stage - and he dominated last year's race at Imola.

Jacques Villeneuve will be oozing confidence this weekend - and not just because of his maiden Grand Prix win. The 25-year-old will relish another battle with Damon Hill et al - this time on a circuit he at least has some previous knowledge of. He tested at the 3.132 mile circuit near Bologna for Williams last year and also raced in the Italian Formula Three Championship in 1991. He said: "It's going to be great to be finally on a track where I have been before and I will not have to spend practice finding out about the track."

Damon Hill is likely to start as favourite at Imola - but Michael Schumacher is set for a hero's welcome. Hill goes into the race still with the superior power package but Scumacher's suggestion that the Ferrari will get better must be worrying. The patriotic Italian fans, the tifosi, will be out in force to cheer the German on as he has his first drive in Italy in their beloved Ferrari. Schumacher's teammate Eddie Irvine will be looking for a change of luck after a good start to the season and that third place in Australia.

David Coulthard is looking forward to Imola with more confidence in the McLaren-Mercedes after taking third place at the European Grand Prix. The switch from Williams-Renault has not been easy for the Scot and he admits his under-fire team are still a long way from those glory days. He said: "We will go to Imola with the same package but a bit more confidence. I am still trying to understand the car and know how to get the best out of it. "On our present performance we are not good enough to win. We will have to see how it develops."

Imola will long be remembered for the tragic events of two years ago when Ayrton Senna and Roland Ratzenberger lost their lives. The circuit has been greatly modified, revising the Tamburello, Villeneuve and Variante Bassa sections of the track which first staged a GP in 1981. The changes have been made as a necessary response to calls to improve driver safety - but some feel Imola has lost a certain edge. Jacques Villeneuve said: "There are a couple of silly chicanes. They have turned it into a typical modern circuit.

TOURING CARS (Thruxton):- World champion Frank Biela announced his arrival to the series in style when he won the opening three rounds in the stunning four-wheel-drive Audi A4. It was an impressive debut for the German team, with newcomer Yorkshirman John Bintcliffe also quickly getting to grips with the fast and furious pace of the British touring cars. Biela's winning streak was finally halted in round four when fellow-German Joachim Winkelhock scored BMW's first win in the Auto Trader series since '94 The action now moves to Thruxton, the fastest circuit on the BTCC calendar.

The much-fancied Williams-run Renault team will be eager to repeat their Thruxton performance of 12 months ago, in rounds 5/6 on Bank Holiday Monday. Swiss star Alain Menu recorded Williams' maiden touring car victory at that meeting and is well due a win this year after two second spots at Brands. Teammate Will Hoy was second to Audi's Frank Biela in both the opening rounds at Donington and will be equally keen to go one better in Hampshire. Qualifying takes place on Saturday, with a nine-race programme on Monday.

Vauxhall's James Thompson made history at Thruxton last year when he won the second race of the meeting. Thompson, at the age of 22, became the youngest ever BTCC race winner. He and teammate, reigning champion John Cleland, have been working hard on the new Vectras which this year replaced the very successful Cavaliers. Cleland loves the Hampshire circuit and the fearless Scot insists: "It's fast, it's bumpy and it's the kind of place for the abnormally brave so count me in! It's really demanding."


World champion Michael Schumacher sent an early warning to title hopeful Damon Hill by dominating the opening practice sessions for Sunday's race at Imola. The difference the 15m-a-year German makes to Ferrari was again evident as he proves fastest in both sessions. Hill was quickest in wet conditions in the morning, but Schumacher got stronger as the track dried. Schumacher clocked 1 min 28.831 secs to set the standard in the second session with Jacques Villeneuve next best and Hill back in sixth place.

Championship leader Damon Hill admitted there was plenty of work to do before Sunday's race after being outpaced by Michael Schumacher in practice. "We have had a reasonably good start. But we have lots more work to do - the car needs to be set up very differently here than in Germany," he said. "I'd be foolish if I was not concerned by Michael's time. It is obviously important for Ferrari to do something here in front of their home fans. "But Friday times are not always a reliable guide this year," Hill added.

Leading Friday practice times:mins secs
 1 M Schumacher  Ger Ferrari  1:28.831
 2 R Barrichello Brz Peugeot  1:29.446
 3 J Villeneuve  Can Williams 1:29.921
 4 M Hakkinen    Fin McLaren  1:29.984
 5 O Panis       Fr  Ligier   1:30.150
 6 D Hill        GB  Williams 1:30.415
 7 D Coulthard   GB  McLaren  1:30.420
 8 E Irvine      Ire Ferrari  1:30.430
 9 H-H Frentzen  Ger Sauber   1:30.462
10 J Herbert     GB  Sauber   1:30.570
11 M Brundle     GB  Jordan   1:30.932
12 J Verstappen  Hol Footwork 1:31.182
13 J Alesi       Fr  Benetton 1:31.513
14 G Berger      Aut Benetton 1:31.654
15 M Salo        Fin Tyrrell  1:31.970
16 R Rosset      Brz Footwork 1:32.563
17 G Fisichella  It  Minardi  1:33.006
18 U Katayama    Jpn Tyrrell  1:33.377
19 P Lamy        Por Minardi  1:33.439
20 A Montermini  It  Forti    1:36.052
21 L Badoer      It  Forti    1:37.963
22 P Diniz       Brz Ligier   1:51.765

F3:- The fourth round of the British F3 Championship takes place at Donington Park on Sunday with Jamie Davies looking for his third victory. The TWR Junior Team Dallara driver will be pressed hard by Guy Smith (Fortec Dallara) and Ralph Firman in the Paul Stewart Racing Dallara. Both are joint second in the points behind Davies. Firman headed the pre-event testing leaderboard at the circuit and aims to continue the British dominance in the series so far this season.

SCOTTISH RALLY:- Stephen Finlay will test his ex-works Ford Escort Cosworth in Arrorchar on Saturday ahead of next month's International Scottish Rally. The County Tyrone driver has already beaten twice British champion Chris Mellors on the previous round so Andy Horne holds no fears for him. Yorkshire's Mike Stephenson, Richard Spink, Anthony Eaton and Chris Blake are competing as are Irish trio Derek and Paul Crossen and Raymond Mason. The rally starts at 10.00am and covers seven special stages.

04.05.96 - F1: THE SAN MARINO GP
World champion Michael Schumacher delighted the adoring Ferrari 'Tifosi' by dramatically snatching pole from Damon Hill at Imola. The German had impressed in practice and set the early qualifying standard with a flying lap of 1:27.416 secs in the rapidly improving Ferrari. Hill responded brilliantly to shave 0.311 secs off Schumacher's time and teammate Jacques Villeneuve followed his lead with 1:27.220. But Schumacher came out again late in the session and a scorching 1:26.890 put him back at the head of the grid.

Michael Schumacher admitted he had underestimated himself and the Ferrari after sensationally snatching pole from Damon Hill. He confounded his pre-Imola prediction that he could not match the Williams' performance by storming through. He said: "It just goes to show that sometimes I am wrong in my assessments - but I am very happy about it. "This is a big surprise but it is a great feeling to take pole here for Ferrari in front of these fans."

Britain's Damon Hill admitted losing pole to arch-rival Michael Schumacher felt like "a punch to the stomach". "It's disappointing, but I never counted on pole. You don't sit in the garage thinking 'This is it, you've got it'", the Williams star said. "Qualifying is important, but it does not tell the whole story. Michael is obviously motivated and being on 'home ground' has lifted him," he added. "But I'm looking forward to coming back for the race and doing the job."

Leading qualifying times:    mins secs
 1 M Schumacher  Ger Ferrari  1:26.890
 2 D Hill        GB  Williams 1:27.105
 3 J Villeneuve  Can Williams 1:27.220
 4 D Coulthard   GB  McLaren  1:27.688
 5 J Alesi       It  Benetton 1:28.009
 6 E Irvine      GB  Ferrari  1:28.205
 7 G Berger      Aut Benetton 1:28.336
 8 M Salo        Fin Tyrrell  1:28.423
 9 R Barrichello Brz Jordan   1:28.632
10 HH Frentzen   Ger Sauber   1:28.785
11 M Hakkinen    Fin McLaren  1:29.079
12 M Brundle     GB  Jordan   1:29.099
13 O Panis       Fr  Ligier   1:29.472
14 J Verstappen  Hol Footwork 1:29.539
15 J Herbert     GB  Sauber   1:29.541
16 U Katayama    Jpn Tyrrell  1:29.892
17 P Diniz       Brz Ligier   1:29.989
18 P Lamy        Por Minardi  1:30.471
19 G Fisichella  It  Minardi  1:30.814
20 R Rosset      Brz Footwork 1:31.316
21 L Badoer      It  Forti    1:32.037
22 A Montermini  It  Forti    1:33.685

SCOTTISH RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP:- Jimmy Christie and Murdoch Campbell came from behind on the final stage to clinch their first victory. They forged ahead after passing previous leader Andy Horne whose Escort was in a ditch with a broken wheel. The duo now lead the championship after four of the eight rounds. George Gauld took second spot having passed former champion Raymond Munro, who came third.

                          mins secs
1 Christie/Campbell Metro   47:00
2 Gauld/Campbell    Escort  47:15
3 Munro/Brunton     Escort  47:31

Championship leader Frank Biela enjoyed a day of mixed fortunes in qualifying for Monday's double-header. The 31-year-old German produced the fastest lap ever seen at the Hampshire circuit to clock 1 min 16.676 secs and take pole for round five. But he will be at the back of the grid for round six after crashing his Audi at Campbell Corner. "I feel sure there was oil on the track," said Biela, who escaped unhurt. Jo Winkelhock will be on pole after a lap of 1:16.820 in his BMW.

Saturday qualifying (round five):
                             mins secs
 1 F Biela      Ger Audi A4   1:16.676
 2 A Menu       Swi Renault L 1:16.996
 3 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i  1:17.098
 4 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4   1:17.703
 5 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc 1:17.783
 6 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  1:17.921
 7 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall  1:17.922
 8 W Hoy        GB  Renualt L 1:17.947
 9 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 1:17.977
10 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850 1:18.111

Saturday qualifying (round six):
                             mins secs
 1 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i  1:16.820
 2 A Menu       Swi Renault L 1:17.077
 3 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  1:17.161
 4 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850 1:17.290
 5 W Hoy        GB  Renualt L 1:17.342
 6 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 1:17.561
 7 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc 1:17.617
 8 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall  1:17.678
 9 T Harvey     GB  Peugeot   1:17.807
10 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4   1:17.888

F3:- Norwich's Ralph Firman was back to his best as he put his Paul Stewart Racing Dallara on pole for Sunday's British Formula Three race at Donington. Firman edged out teammate Jonny Kane by just two-tenths of a second with a lap of 1 min 30.313 secs. "We made a few detailed changes to the set-up. That helped termedously," Firman said afterwards. Belgian Kurt Molleckens (1:30.810) will start third on the grid - his best-ever qualifying performance since joining Formula Three last year.

F.RENAULT:- Darren Turner pipped series leader David Cook for pole after the closest qualifying session in Formula Renault history at Thruxton.

UK GTs:- Ian Flux and Jake Ulrich are in pole position in their McLaren F1 GTR for round two of the Privilege Insurance GT Championship at Donington Park today.

F3:- Yorkshire company director Paula Cook escaped unhurt in an horrific shunt on the start-line in the British Formula Three Championship race at Donington. Her Dallara rolled spectacularly after colliding with two other spinning cars as the field charged off the grid. The incident came when the race was re-started after a three-car collision at Redgate Corner on the opening lap. The cars got away safely third time around and Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya won comfortably from Darren Manning over a reduced 12-lap distance.


Damon Hill held off Michael Schumacher in a fascinating race at Imola to clinch his fourth win of the season. Hill, who made a mess of his last start at the Nurburgring, bounced back by overtaking the defending champion from the starting grid. David Coulthard made the early running as McLaren led for the first time this season but it soon developed into a Williams-Ferrari battle. Hill's superior power package and sharper pit stops finally told, much to the disappointment of the Ferrari faithful roaring on Schumacher.

Damon Hill was under pressure at Imola - but came up with the goods to stretch his Championship lead to 21 points. Tactics, as much as anything else, played a major part in the 63-lap race - with the Williams star winning the battle of wits with Schumacher. Hill's first pit stop was a slick 7.6 secs compared to Schumacher's 9.5, with the German clocking 11.7 secs on his second stop. Williams delayed Hill's second stop until half race distance and they judged it perfectly, leaving Hill to race away and on to a superb win.

Damon Hill was delighted after keeping Michael Schumacher at bay on the testing track of Imola. Hill said: "The pit stops were brilliant. We calculated it very well. I was very happy with the start as well. I am delighted because it is such a fantastic race to do well in." Schumacher was more than happy with his second place - after one of his tyres locked at the finish. He said: "I only had three wheels going over the finish line. It was lucky the race was over."

David Coulthard made a brilliant start to boost McLaren at Imola - and was happy even though he failed to finish. The Scottish ace muscled his way past Michael Schumacher but fell back after his first pit stop and retired on lap 46 with hydraulic problems. He said: "It was great to be leading a Grand Prix again. It was a great start and I'm delighted for the team." Eddie Irvine claimed fourth for Ferrari but Martin Brundle (Jordan) and and Johnny Herbert (Sauber) both failed to finish.

Jacques Villeneuve lost ground on teammate Damon Hill after a frustrating afternoon at Imola. The Canadian had to retire his Williams just four laps from the end after early bumps with Jean Alesi's Benetton. He said: "We banged wheels at the first corner and then at the next his front wheel must have banged into my rear wheel and there was a blow-out. We changed the tyres, the car was running strong again, but then the rear right suspension broke."

Result after 63 laps:       hrs min sec
 1 D Hill        GB  Williams 1:35.26
 2 M Schumacher  Ger Ferrari @  16.46
 3 G Berger      Aut Benetton@  46.89
 4 E Irvine      GB  Ferrari @1:01.58
 5 R Barrichello Brz Jordan  @1:18.49
 6 J Alesi       Fr  Benetton 1 lap
 7 P Diniz       Brz Ligier   1 lap
 8 M Hakkinen    Fin McLaren  1 lap
 9 P Lamy        Por Minardi  2 laps
10 L Badoer      It  Forti    4 laps
11 J Villeneuve  Can Williams  DNF

12 O Panis       Fr  Ligier  54 laps
13 U Katayama    Jpn Tyrrell 45 laps
14 D Coulthard   GB  McLaren 44 laps
15 R Rosset      Brz Footwork40 laps
16 J Verstappen  Hol Footwork38 laps
17 M Brundle     GB  Jordan  36 laps
18 H Frentzen    Ger Sauber  32 laps
19 G Fisichella  It  Minardi 30 laps
20 J Herbert     GB  Sauber  25 laps
21 M Salo        Fin Tyrrell 23 laps


 1 D Hill       GB   Williams 43 pts
 2 J Villeneuve Can  Williams 22
 3 M Schumacher Ger  Ferrari  16
 4 J Alesi      Fr   Benetton 11
 5 E Irvine     GB   Ferrari   9
 6 R BarrichelloBrz  Jordan    7
 = G Berger     Aut  Benetton  7
 8 M Hakkinen   Fin  McLaren   5
 9 D Coulthard  GB   McLaren   4
10 M Salo       Fin  Tyrrell   3
11 O Panis      Fr   Ligier    1
== J Verstappen Hol  Footwork  1
== M Brundle    GB   Jordan    1

1 Williams-Renault    65 points
2 Ferrari             25
3 Benetton-Renault    18
4 McLaren-Mercedes     9
5 Jordan-Peugeot       8
6 Tyrrell-Yamaha       3
7 Ligier-Mugen Honda   1
= Footwork-Hart        1

06.05.96 - BTCC
German Frank Biela extended his lead in the championship race to 35 points with his fourth victory of the season in Monday's double-header. He brought his Audi A4 home 2.97 secs clear of teammate John Bintcliffe in the 19-lap opener. Biela also took a superb third place in the second race, won by Jo Winkelhock, despite starting from the back of the grid after a qualifying crash. "I don't think Biela has even had to try hard yet," said defending champion John Cleland, who finished fourth in both races in his Vauxhall Vectra.

Result of round five after 19 laps:
                              mins secs
 1 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    25:20.70
 2 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4    25:23.67
 3 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850  25:26.39
 4 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V 25:26.91
 5 W Hoy        GB  Renualt L  25:28.29
 6 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850  25:32.23
 7 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i   25:32.40
 8 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall V 25:35.19
 9 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc  25:46.18
10 O McAuley    GB  Nissan Pr  26:09.94

Result of round six after 21 laps:
                              mins secs
 1 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i   30:38.01
 2 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i   30:39.08
 3 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    30:40.36
 4 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V 30:42.18
 5 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc  30:49.52
 6 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall V 30:56.74
 7 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4    30:56.84
 8 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850  31:00.08
 9 J Kaye       GB  Honda Acc  31:04.04
10 P Watts      GB  Peugeot    31:04.42

Drivers standings after six rounds:
1 F Biela       Audi A4   80 points
2 J Winkelhock  BMW 320i  45
3 R Rydell      Volvo 850 42
4 A Menu        Renault   35
= J Bintcliffe  Audi A4   35
6 R Ravaglia    BMW 320i  34

Manufacturers' standings:
1 Audi          80 points
2 Renault       60
3 BMW           58
4 Volvo         56
5 Vauxhall      47
6 Honda         27
7 Peugeot       21

08.05.96 - F1
World champion Michael Schumacher headed the times on the second day of aweek of testing in Imola. The German ace recorded a best lap of one minute, 28.45 seconds to prove Ferrari's resurgence. Austria's Gerhard Berger was hot on his heels in a time of 1:28.64 while Jacques Villeneuve was fractionally slower in 1:28.86. Damon Hill came seventh in 1:29.63 as the Williams team made modifications to their car on a day of heavy rain.

Organisers of the San Marino Grand Prix are to be quizzed by FIA chiefs about the track invasion at the end of Sunday's race. Imola officials have been asked to appear before the World Motor Sport Council at its next meeting in Paris on June 11. The race, won by Damon Hill, ended amid chaotic scenes as thousands of fans swarmed on to the track. Third-placed Gerhard Berger said that when he took the chequered flag it was "too dangerous to continue" and he stopped his Benetton.

RALLY OF INDONESIA:- Scotland's world rally champion Colin McRae faces tricky conditions at the Rally of Indonesia, starting on Friday. Drivers have reported the plantation roads of northern Sumatra as rough as any in the world championship, but mostly they fear heavy rain. McRae, who won the race last year, said: "If it is wet, it's unbelievably slippery. It's just a question of where you go off and if you hit something." The three-day, 761-mile race will start in the north Sumatran city of Medan.

MINTEX RALLY SERIES - THE MANX RALLY:- Chris Mellors will be gunning for glory across the Irish Sea this weekend as the Mintex National Rallly Series goes to the Isle of Man. Mellors, already well-placed to take a record-breaking third successive title, has maximum points so far this season but he has never won the Manx before. He will steer his Ford Escort Cosworth in the only all-tarmac round along 120 miles of closed public roads. The 14-stage rally starts on Saturday morning, with 100 cars competing.

Positions after stage 9 of 28:
(end of first day)        hrs mins secs
 1 C McRae    GB  Subaru     1:38.00
 2 T Makinen  Fin Mitsubishi 1:38.05
 3 J KankkunenFin Toyota     1:41.06
 4 C Sainz    Sp  Ford       1:41.29
 5 P Liatti   It  Subaru     1:41.30
 6 Y Fujimoto Jpn Toyota     1:46.58
 7 A Indiarto Ind Mitsubishi 1:49.26
 8 D Indra    Ind Ford Escort1:50.07
 9 I Gading   Ind Subaru     1:50.21
10 M Lieu     Ind Subaru     1:51.55
Title-holder Colin McRae snatched the first day lead from Tommi Makinen in a tense start to the Rally of Indonesia. Finland's Makinen, who has won the first two rounds, forged into an early lead despite twice spinning his Mitsubishi on slippery roads. Scot McRae overhauled him on special stage eight but the five-second margin he opened up may not last long in the treacherous conditions. He admitted: "If you push too hard in this sort of stuff, you just go off."

Former world champion Juha Kankkunen recovered from a poor start to lie third in his Toyota Celica at the end of the opening leg led by Colin McRae. Kankkunen lost time on the rain-hit first stage using the wrong tyres. "We changed to narrower, softer tyres for the other stages and have gone well since...the sudden rain storms altered the roads in seconds," he commented. Early retirements included Britain's Richard Burns (Mitsubishi) who hit an earth bank and Gwyndaf Evans (Ford) with fuel and electrical problems.


 1 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 1:40.340
 2 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i  1:40.618
 3 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850 1:40.809
 4 F Biela      Ger Audi A4   1:40.910
 5 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall V1:41.285
 6 W Hoy        GB  Renualt L 1:41.389
 7 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V1:41.395
 8 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc 1:41.499
 9 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  1:41.541
10 A Menu       Swi Renault L 1:41.637
11 T Harvey     GB  Peugeot   1:41.659
12 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4   1:41.741                         
Next round: Silverstone May 19

Rickard Rydell was once again the star of the show in official testing, held at the Oulton Park circuit in Cheshire. The talented Swede, who has set the pace in every BTCC test so far this season but has yet to win a race, lapped in 1 min 40.340 secs. He was more than 2/10ths of a second quicker than BMW driver Jo Winkelhock and 1.5s inside the qualifying record. Teammate Kelvin Burt underlined the Volvo pace by setting the third best time just ahead of Championship leader Frank Biela in one of the Audi A4s.

GTs:- Britain's Steve Soperwas fastest in practice for Sunday's Kodak British Empire Trophy race, round four of the BPR Endurance GT series, at Silverstone Soper, racing a sports car for the first time in more than a decade, took the BMW Motorsport-backed McLaren F1GTR around the track in 1:49.075. He will share the car in Sunday's four-hour race with former three times world champion Nelson Piquet, as the team prepare for the Le Mans 24-Hour race. Second fastest of the 55 cars was the Gulf McLaren of Pierre-Henri Raphanel and Cheshire's Lindsay Owen-Jones.

ITC:- Italian Alessandro Nannini set the pace in Friday's qualifying for rounds three and four of the FIA International Touring Car series at the Nurburgring. Nannini in his Alfa Romeo clocked 1:37.432, with Briton Dario Franchitti (Mercedes) second in 1:37.601. ITC series leader Jan Magnussen just squeezed into the top 10 after trying some new systems on his Mercedes while Franchitti's teammate Bernd Schneider, the defending champion, was sixth. "It was tough out there," admitted 22-year-old Magnussen.

MINTEX SERIES - THE MANX RALLY:- John Price, bidding to win one of the few all-asphalt rallies to have eluded him, led after being quickest on SS3 but retired after a puncture cost him four minutes on SS6. Reigning Mintex National champion and series leader Chris Mellors retired his Escort after suspension failure on SS3. Stephen Price, John's son, added to the family's disappointment when he crashed his Metro on SS5. He was taken to hospital for a precautionary check-up. The 14-stage rally is due to finish in Douglas at around 5pm.

Result after 14 stages:        mins secs
 1 P Doughty/L Jenkins Escort C 1:48:13
 2 B Gwynne/R Herd     Subaru   1:50:18
 3 T Davies/A Cook     MG Metro 1:51.36
 4 S Hill/S Boyles     Mi'bishi 1:52:23
 5 S Hendy/M Milton    Escort C 1:53:08
 6 S Smith/J Bennie    Lancia   1:54:00
 7 G McCartney/P McRea Sierra C 1:54:02
 8 G Thomas/P Harrison Sierra C 1:56:57
 9 N Cannell/M Cannell Vauxhall 1:58:04
10 S Petch/P Croft     Escort C 1:59:07

Nottingham's Pete Doughty, driving an Escort Cosworth, repeated his 1994 Manx victory with a dominant display which saw him win by almost two minutes. Fourth place was enough to make Mitsubishi driver Steve Hill the new leader in the Mintex series. Steve Petch won an epic showroom Group N battle with Jeremy Easson by virtue of a tie break after the two had finished level on time. Twice Mintex champion Chris Mellors was forced to retire during the first half of the rally.

Positions after stage 16 of 28:
(end of second leg)       hrs mins secs
 1 C McRae    GB  Subaru     3:02.13
 2 J KankkunenFin Toyota     3:05.51
 3 C Sainz    Sp  Ford       3:06.30
 4 P Liatti   It  Subaru     3:08.11
 5 Y Fujimoto Jpn Toyota     3:18.09
 6 D Indra    RI  Ford Escort3:27.25
 7 M Lieu     HK  Subaru     3:26.46
 8 R Pribadi  RI  Toyota     3:29.08
 9 B Hartono  RI  Mitsubishi 3:33.01
10 S Konishi  Jpn Subaru     3:34.48

Scot Colin McRae increased his lead by the end of the second day of three in the Rally of Indonesia as Finland's Juha Kankkunen moved into second place. McRae finished 3.5 minutes clear in his Subaru Impreza, while his overnight rival Tommi Makinen retiring on SS11 after damaging his Mitsubishi radiator. Kankkunen battled throughout the day with Ford driver Carlos Sainz and Piero Liatti in a Subaru, at one time slipping back to fourth spot. A good tyre choice later in the day helped him climb up the leaderboard.

Colin McRae found the going tough on the second day in Indonesia and predicts a demanding final day. "The first two stages south of Parapat were incredibly slippy this morning," admitted the 555 Subaru star. "It was good to get back on some gravel."

"Tomorrow is going to be a long, hard day and we'll just have to see what the weather is like," added McRae. Tropical rain has made things difficult and SS14, run in a heavy storm, was a real struggle. "In some corners the car was just sliding with no steering," said second-placed Juha Kankkunen.

Spaniard Carlos Sainz is chasing at least runner-up spot after a thrilling battle on the second day in Indonesia. Sainz fought with Subaru's Piero Liatti and Juha Kankkunen (Toyota) over the seven stages of the second leg which saw second-placed Tommi Makinen retire. The pressure was intense and, during the afternoon, Liatti made a mistake and spun handing second spot to Sainz. Sainz then slid off briefly on SS15, slipping to third behind Juha Kankkunen "We have been faster than him on every stage except one and will try to get ahead of Juha again," he insisted.

GTs:- Britain's Steve Soper clinched pole position for Sunday's Kodak British Empire Trophy race, round four of the BPR Endurance GT series, at Silverstone. Soper, driving a McLaren F1 GTR for Team Bigazzi, set his best time in the morning, with the afternoon session hit by light rain on parts of the circuit. He shares the car in Sunday's four-hour race with Nelson Piquet. The Ferrari F40 GTE of Jean Marc Gounon Eric Bernard and Paul Belmondo will line up alongside the McLaren ahead of the Lotus Esprit V8 of Jan Lammers and Perry McCarthy.

Final qualifying at the Nurburgring:
                              mins secs
 1 J Van Ommen  Ger Mercedes   1:37.720
 2 A Nannini    It  Alfa Romeo 1:37.617
 3 D Franchitti GB  Mercedes   1:37.945
 4 J J Lehto    Fin Opel C'bra 1:38.221
 5 B Schneider  Ger Mercedes   1:38.326
 6 G Fisichella It  Alfa Romeo 1:38.416
 7 C Danner     Ger Alfa Romeo 1:38.681
 8 M Reuter     Ger Opel C'bra 1:38.934
 9 H-J Stuck    Ger Opel C'bra 1:39.280
10 J Magnussen  Den Mercedes   1:39.338                
German Jorg van Ommen claimed pole spot for the third and fourth rounds of the FIA International Touring Car series, after edging out Alessandro Nannini. "I have been trying for five years to drive the perfect lap and that was as close to it as I have ever got," said the Mercedes driver. Nannini starts second on the grid in his Alfa Romeo, while Britain's Dario Franchitti set the third fastest time. "The car was understeering a bit but I am happy with the balance for the race" said Mercedes star Franchitti.

ITC:- German Jorg van Ommen scored the first win of his career in the third round of the FIA International Touring Car series at Nurburgring. The Mercedes driver started on pole and although lost out to Scottish teammate Dario Franchitti at the first corner, retook the lead on the 14th lap. German Manuel Reuter leads the championship after finishing third behind Franchitti in round three with victory in round four. He has a three point cushion over Jan Magnussen who finished seventh and third respectively in a Mercedes.

Result of race one at Nurburgring:
                           mins secs
1 J Van Ommen Ger Mercedes   37:12
2 D FranchittiGB  Mercedes   37:14
3 M Reuter    Ger Opel C'bra 37:24
4 B Schneider Ger Mercedes   37:25
5 J J Lehto   Fin Opel C'bra 37:27
6 H-J Stuck   Ger Opel C'bra 37:28

Result of race two at Nurburgring:                                      
1 M Reuter    Ger Opel C'bra 37:30
2 J J Lehto   Fin Opel C'bra 37:32
3 J M'nussen  Den Mercedes   37:37
4 U Alzen     Ger Opel C'bra 37:45
5 G Tarquini  It  Alfa Romeo 37:45
6 B Schneider Ger Mercedes   37:46

GTs:- Britain's Andy Wallace with co-driver Oliver Grouillard in the Harrods McLaren won the British Empire Trophy race at Silverstone for a second successive year. The pair ended a recent poor run by clinching victory in the fourth round of the BPR Endurance GT series by 1 min 16 secs after four hours' racing. Jan Lammers and Perry McCarthy were second in the Lotus Esprit V8 just 13s ahead of series leaders Ray Bellm and James Weaver in the Gulf McLaren. Steve Soper and Nelson Piquet ran out of petrol in the Bigazzi McLaren after an hour but recovered to take fourth.

British Empire Trophy result:hr mins sec
 1 Wallace/G'llard  McLaren  4:00:33
 2 Lammers/McCarthy Lotus    4:01:16
 3 Weaver/Bellm     McLaren  4:01:29
 4 Soper/Piquet     McLaren  4:01:29
 5 Gounon/Ber'd/BellFerrari  4:02:24
 6 Nielsen/Bscher   McLaren  4:01:17
 7 Olofsson/Noce    Ferrari  4:01:38
 8 Ferte/Thevenin   Ferrari  4:00:55
 9 Wollek/Konrad    Porsche  4:01:39  
10 Euser/Erdos      Marcos   4:00:41

IRL:- Scott Brayton's big gamble paid off when he grabbed a second straight Indianapolis 500 pole. With barely 15 minutes left in the opening round of qualifications, Brayton bumped Arie Luyendyk off the pole in record fashion. Brayton capped an intense qualifying session for the May 26 race with a four-lap record of 2:34.032 and an average speed of 233.718 mph. "I felt like consistency would win out at the end. I knew that I would be quick right from the start," said Brayton said afterwards.

RALLY OF INDONESIA:- Spaniard Carlos Sainz was finally confirmed as winner of the Rally of Indonesia after surviving a lengthy inquiry into the early hours of Monday. His Ford team were fined $20,000 under rules governing repairs to cars but Sainz was allowed to retain his victory. Sainz, who overcame two accidents and major gearbox problems, said the rally had been one of his most difficult yet. World champion Colin McRae crashed at high speed on SS19 after problems with his intercom while Juha Kankkunen, who inherited the lead for Toyota, slipped back to third after a problem on SS24.

Result after 27 stages:     hrs mins secs
 1 C Sainz     Sp  Ford        5:30:00
 2 P Liatti    It  Subaru      5:30:23
 3 J Kankkunen Fin Toyota      5:31:02
 4 Y Fujimoto  Jpn Toyota      5:49:44
 5 R Pribadi   RI  Toyota      6:06:17
 6 M Lieu      HK  Subaru      6:07:22
 7 K Singh     Mal Proton Wira 6:13:40
 8 S Konishi   Jpn Subaru      6:15:08
 9 I Gading    RI  Subaru      6:15:55
10   Hartono   RI  Mitsubishi  6:21:20

Driver's standings:
1 T Makinen   Fin Mitsubishi 40 pts
2 C Sainz     Sp  Ford       35
3 K Eriksson  Swe Subaru     23
= P Liatti    It  Subaru     23
5 C McRae     GB  Subaru     22
= J Kankkunen Fin Toyota     22

Manufacturers' standings:
1 Subaru     122 pts
2 Mitsubishi  97
3 Ford        88

14.05.96 - F1: THE MONACO GP
Damon Hill's early dominance comes under scrutiny when the Formula One circus moves to the streets of Monte Carlo this weekend. Hill has won four out of five races this season but he will need to break his duck at Monaco if he is to extend his 21-point championship advantage. The Williams-Renault driver has made no secret of his desire to win on the tight, twisting circuit - and he has a special reason for wanting to do well. His father Graham has won here five times - only Ayrton Senna has bettered that. Hill has some catching up to do.

Damon Hill said he was geared up to claim victory for the first time on the famous street circuit. "If you are not impressed by Formula One cars in Monaco then you can't be impressed by them anywhere," he said. "It has a different atmosphere which is down to the venue on the sea with the boats in the harbour, the sunshine and the twisty corners. All in all, it is unlike any other track we go to. I would like to win here because my father won five times here in the sixties."

Michael Schumacher bids for a hat-trick of victories at Monaco buoyed by an impressive display at San Marino. The Ferrari driver's pre-season claims that he had no chance of figuring in the title race had a hollow ring about them after the last race. Schumacher was clearly the fastest man in qualifying and second place was a big improvement on his early season. Qualifying positions at Monaco, with its narrow streets, is more important than anyone else and if he can keep out of trouble he has a chance of winning.

Benetton have looked an ordinary force this season and failure this weekend will virtually ensure they will spend the rest of the year as also-rans. Michael Schumacher's departure has left the team severely weakened, although Gerhard Berger's third place at San Marino was a much-needed boost. Jean Alesi has disappointed and the team management is said to be privately unhappy as a number of foolish mistakes have left him with just one point. Berger can at least be cheered by podium appearances here in the last two years after third-place finishes.

15.05.96 - TOURING CARS
AutoTrader RAC Touring Car Championship officials have revised minimum weight limits with effect from next Monday. Four-wheel drive cars will be required to carry an extra 30kg and the move follows Audi's record of four wins from the first six races of the season. Audi say they will continue to compete despite being disappointed by the organisers decision to add a further handicap to its A4 quattro. The car had already carried a mandatory ballast over its front and rear wheel drive rivals.

F1:- Nigel Mansell and Alain Prost could be set for a dramatic Formula One return - in a #1m head-to-head confrontation. The two former world champions are being lined up to meet in a winner-take -all clash, possibly in a Ferrari. Grand Prix supremo Bernie Ecclestone is behind the move to bring two of motor racing's greatest names back onto the track, according to the Daily Mirror. The race, which would be billed as a grudge-match as the pair fell out when Ferrari team-mates, could be staged as a support event or as a season finale.


Mika Hakkinen confirmed his return to form and fitness - six months after his near-fatal accident in practice for the Australian Grand Prix. McLaren driver Hakkinen clocked the fastest lap in opening free practice,posting his time in the final minutes of the second hour of practice. It left Damon Hill with virtually no time to respond in his Williams after being fastest throughout the day. Hakkinen's effort on the street circuit also confirmed that his team are recovering their best form after a long spell in the doldrums.

Thursday's free practice times:mins secs
 1 M Hakkinen    Fin McLaren  1:23.762
 2 D Hill        GB  Williams 1:23.801
 3 D Coulthard   GB  McLaren  1:23.850
 4 R Barrichello Brz Jordan   1:23.976
 5 J Alesi       Fr  Benetton 1:24.160
 6 O Panis       Fr  Ligier   1:24.167
 7 J Villeneuve  Can Williams 1:24.257
 8 M Brundle     GB  Jordan   1:24.270
 9 G Berger      Aut Benetton 1:24.285
10 H Frentzen    Ger Sauber   1:24.585
11 M Schumacher  Ger Ferrari  1:24.757
12 J Verstappen  Hol Footwork 1:25.118
13 U Katayama    Jpn Tyrrell  1:25.322
14 G Fisichella  It  Minardi  1:25.326
15 P Lamy        Por Minardi  1:25.441
16 M Salo        Fin Tyrrell  1:25.615
17 E Irvine      GB  Ferrari  1:25.688
18 P Diniz       Brz Ligier   1:25.936
19 J Herbert     GB  Sauber   1:26.143
20 A Montermini  It  Forti    1:27.843
21 L Badoer      It  Forti    1:28.451
22 R Rosset      Brz Footwork 1:28.512

TOURING CAR (Silverstone) PREVIEW:- Many of the British Touring Car drivers will be eagerly anticipating this weekend's two races, the first BTCC visit to the new International Circuit. All the top teams have tested their 150mph Super Tourer racers on the much-revised 2.21-mile track and 1995 champion John Cleland was among many to voice his approval after the sessions. "It's a vast improvement over the old National track," said the Scot. "The new hairpin should provide the crowd with plenty of thrills and spills," added the Vauxhall driver.

Defending champion John Cleland has faced a near-impossible task so far trying to answer newcomers Audi with their awesome four-wheel-drive A4s. German ace Frank Biela has blasted his way to four convincing wins out of six races, the other two going to BMW's hard-charger Jo Winkelhock. Audi should again be among the front-runners in Sunday's two 20-lap races but things could be tougher after that. Minimum weight limits have just been revised and 4wd cars must carry an extra 30kg from Monday onwards.

Londoner Will Hoy will be looking for an upturn in his fortunes when rounds 7/8 take place this weekend. Hoy, who races for the Williams-run Renault Laguna team was runner-up to Frank Biela at Donington over Easter but has had little luck since. Teammate Alain Menu has also claimed two second places and, naturally, will be hoping to go one better this time. Super-quick Rickard Rydell and his Volvo teammate Kelvin Burt, who were fastest in official pre-race testing, will be among the race favourites.

Tim Harvey is convinced he will soon be up among the front-runners after steady improvement to his new Peugeot 406. "The car is getting better and better, the others had better start looking over their shoulders as we are on a charge," said the former BTCC champion. Ford's Paul Radisich has been a regular winner at Silverstone but, with his V6 Mondeo yet to hit top form, he and teammate Steve Robertson may have to be content with just Championship points. Honda's David Leslie and James Kaye are determined to make the podium this time.

Privateers will be certain to provide extra excitement as they bid for the lucrative Total Cup - and aim to embarrass the works teams on the way. Drivers to watch include Robb Gravett in a Ford Mondeo, Richard Kaye in his Vauxhall Cavalier and last year's Total Cup winner Matt Neal in another Mondeo. Lee Brookes took privateer glory in his Toyota at Thruxton in the last round. Qualifying sessions for both BTCC races takes place on Saturday with Sunday featuring nine races, the touring cars at 12.30 and 3.30pm.

F1: THE MONACO GP:- Championship leader Damon Hill knows Sunday's race is an ideal opportunity to ensure the family name lives on in Monaco history. Victory would see Hill emulate his father Graham and as he goes for his first win in the principality Damon admitted: "I'd love to win it. Everyone knows my father's record here. To win it five times is an incredible achievement." Hill, who will be watched by his mother Betty, added: "It would be nice to have another Hill name on the trophy."

TOURING CARS:- The BMWs of Jo Winkelhock and Roberto Ravaglia topped the final official testing timesheets for Sunday's rounds seven and eight at Silverstone. 1993 champion Winkelhock - winner last time out at Thruxton, lapped the new circuit in 1 minute 24.495 seconds. He eclipsed the testing mark set by Volvo's Rickard Rydell by a half-second Championship leader Frank Biela was in trouble, blowing his Laguna's engine this morning and spinning into a gravel trap at Becketts Corner.

 1 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i   1:24.495
 2 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i   1:24.845
 3 W Hoy        GB  Renualt L  1:25.036
 4 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850  1:25.152
 5 P Radisich   NZ  F Mondeo   1:25.185
 6 A Menu       Swi Renault L  1:25.244
 7 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4    1:25.373
 8 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850  1:25.424
 9 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V 1:25.507
10 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc  1:25.519
11 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    1:25.521
12 R Kaye       GB  Vauxhall C 1:25.533

IRL:- Scott Brayton, the Indy 500 polesitter, died in hospital after crashing during practice for the May 26 race. The 37-year-old's Lola-Menard back-up car spun into a wall in Indianapolis.


Michael Schumacher stole position after a scintillating duel with championship leader Damon Hill in qualifying. The German Ferrari driver had set the early pace but Williams Renault ace Hill edged in front with his final lap. Schumacher, however, had saved his best until last and blazed into the crucial pole position for Sunday's race with just two minutes of qualifying left. Frenchman Jean Alesi is in third place with Gerhard Berger fourth and David Coulthard fifth.

Defending champion Michael Schumacher was blasted for his celebrations after clinching pole position. Schumacher waved at the crowd while driving back to the pits but failed to spot Gerhard Berger was still on a qualifying run and forced him to spin. Berger's spin also wrecked the hopes of McLaren's Mika Hakkinen and team boss Ron Dennis said: "It was not behaviour befitting a world champion." The German had to explain his actions to race control and apologised.

Damon Hill refused to be downhearted after watching Michael Schumacher grab pole position for Sunday's race. "I can make do with second place and I'm not unhappy with that," said Hill, whose father Graham won five times here in the 1960's. "It's really crucial to be on the front row, and I've still got a very good chance of winning the race." But the German's second successive pole means he will be able to dictate the race around the tight streets where it is almost impossible to overtake.

Grid positions:               mins secs
 1 M Schumacher   Ger Ferrari  1:20.356
 2 D Hill         GB  Williams 1:20.866
 3 J Alesi        Fra Benetton 1:20.918
 4 G Berger       Aut Benetton 1:21.067
 5 D Coulthard    GB  McLaren  1:21.460
 6 R Barrichello  Brz Jordan   1:21.504
 7 E Irvine       GB  Ferrari  1:21.542
 8 M Hakkinen     Fin McLaren  1:21.688
 9 H Frentzen     Ger Sauber   1:21.929
10 J Villeneuve   Can Williams 1:21.963
11 M Salo         Fin Tyrrell  1:22.235
12 J Verstappen   Hol Footwork 1:22.327
13 J Herbert      GB  Sauber   1:22.346
14 O Panis        Fra Ligier   1:22.358
15 U Katayama     Jap Tyrrell  1:22.460
16 M Brundle      GB  Jordan   1:22.519
17 P Diniz        Brz Ligier   1:22.682
18 G Fisichella   It  Minardi  1:22.684
19 P Lamy         Por Minardi  1:23.350
20 R Rosset       Brz Footwork 1:24.976
21 L Badoer       It  Forti    1:25.059
22 A Montermini   It  Forti    1:25.393

IRL:- Rookie driver Dan Drinian crashed into a wall during practice for the May 26 Indianapolis 500 just a day after Scott Brayton was killed on the track. Drinian suffered concussion and a broken hip but it was the fourth crash since practice started on May 4. Brayton, preparing to drive in his 15th Indy 500, became the 39th driver killed at the speedway since the track held its first race in 1909. His Lola-Menard back-up car hit an outside wall at 230mph.

TOURING CARS:- Engine dramas did not stop teammates Roberto Ravaglia and Jo Winkelhock claiming front row positions for BMW for round seven on Sunday. The pair were restricted to one lap apiece because of mechanical problems but it was enough for Ravaglia to earn his first ever BTCC pole position. "I'm very happy," admitted Ravaglia. "I was very lucky to get that lap in." Frank Biela and his Audi A4 will be on the front row for round eight. Alain Menu (Renault Laguna) will join him.

(Round seven - Silverstone)   mins secs
 1 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i   1:25.139
 2 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i   1:25.150
 3 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850  1:25.168
 4 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc  1:25.217
 5 J Kaye       GB  Honda Acc  1:25.333
 6 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850  1:25.396
 7 A Menu       Swi Renault L  1:25.458
 8 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4    1:25.502
 9 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    1:25.512
10 W Hoy        GB  Renault L  1:25.516
11 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V 1:25.811
12 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall V 1:25.861

QUALIFYING TIMES (Round eight)mins secs
 1 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    1:34.057
 2 A Menu       Swi Renault L  1:34.534
 3 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i   1:34.569
 4 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall V 1:34.865
 5 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850  1:34.940
 6 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i   1:35.192
 7 W Hoy        GB  Renault L  1:35.220
 8 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4    1:35.237
 9 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc  1:35.278
10 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall V 1:35.297
11 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850  1:35.513
12 J Kaye       GB  Honda Acc  1:36.642

RENAULT SPIDER CUP:- Championship leader Jason Plato set the fastest time in the Elf Renault Spider qualifying session at Silverstone.


Olivier Panis swept to a shock victory after pre-race favourites Damon Hill and Michael Schumacher went out in the most dramatic race of the season. Schumacher, starting on pole, went out on the first lap while championship leader Hill suffered an engine failure. Benetton's Jean Alesi took the lead but was forced to retire, allowing his French compatriot into first place. Scot David Coulthard challenged hard but had to settle for second place as just four cars finished the race.

Olivier Panis's shock win at Monaco headed a series of firsts on an extraordinary day at the Principality. It was the Frenchman's first ever win in 39 races - and a first for Ligier since 1981. David Coulthard's second place was his highest finish for the team - while Johnny Herbert's third place brought his first points for Sauber. Damon Hill's retirment ensured he was out of the points for the first time this season.

Damon Hill's dream of a Monaco triumph was thwarted after an engine failure as he led midway through the race. Hill was almost a half-minute in front having led from the first lap when flames appeared at the back of his Williams Renault car on lap 41. The championship leader had looked set for victory at the Principality. where his father won five times in the 1960s. It was Hill's first retirement of the season. He later revealed that the engine had seized up.

Damon Hill said he thought he was set for a maiden Monaco win before engine failure wrecked his victory charge. "I thought I had it. I had a good grip on the race, enough fuel to finish and a good gap on Jean Alesi," he said. "I just needed to keep my concentration and hope for reliability but I didn't get that last factor. I never got to the end and that's a shame. There are lots of races still to come and I could have done with a few more points," added the Williams driver.

Michael Schumacher's hat-trick bid ended abruptly as he crashed out on the very first lap at rain-swept Monaco. The world champion started on pole but was immediately overtaken on the slippery surface by Williams rival and championship leader Damon Hill. Worse was soon to follow for the German Ferrari driver, who had won the last two races here, as he lost control and crashed before the entry to the tunnel. He was one of nine drivers - out of 21 starters - to crash out within the first six laps of the race.

Race result:                  hr:mn:sec
 1 O Panis      Fr  Ligier     2:00.456
 2 D Coulthard  GB  McLaren   @   4.829
 3 J Herbert    GB  Sauber    @  37.503
 4 H Frentzen   Ger Sauber    @  1 lap
 5 M Salo       Fin Tyrrell   @  4 laps
 6 M Hakkinen   Fin McLaren   @  4 laps
 7 E Irvine     GB  Ferrari   @  6 laps
 8 J Villeneuve Can Williams  @  8 laps
 9 J Alesi      Fr  Benetton  @ 14 laps
10 L Badoer     It  Forti     @ 14 laps
11 D Hill       GB  Williams  @ 34 laps
12 M Brundle    GB  Jordan    @ 44 laps
13 G Berger     Aut Benetton  @ 65 laps
14 P Diniz      Brz Ligier    @ 69 laps
15 R Rosset     Brz Footwork  @ 71 laps
16 U Katayama   Jpn Tyrrell   @ 72 laps
17 M Schumacher Ger Ferrari   @ 73 laps
18 R Bar'chello Brz Jordan    @ 73 laps
19 J Verstappen Hol Footwork  @ 73 laps
20 P Lamy       Por Minardi   @ 73 laps
21 G Fisichella It  Minardi   @ 73 laps

Drivers Championship:
 1 D Hill        GB   Williams  43 pts
 2 J Villeneuve  Can  Williams  22
 3 M Schumacher  Ger  Ferrari   16
 4 J Alesi       Fr   Benetton  11
 = O Panis       Fr   Ligier    11
 6 D Coulthard   GB   McLaren   10
 7 E Irvine      GB   Ferrari    9
 = R Barrichello Brz  Jordan     7
 9 G Berger      Aut  Benetton   7
10 M Hakkinen    Fin  McLaren    6
11 M Salo        Fin  Tyrrell    5
12 J Herbert     GB   Sauber     4
13 H Frentzen    Ger  Sauber     3
 = J Verstappen  Hol  Footwork   1
 = M Brundle     GB   Jordan     1

Constructors Championship:
1 Williams-Renault     65 points
2 Ferrari              25
3 Benetton-Renault     18
4 McLaren-Mercedes     16
5 Ligier-Mugen Honda   11
6 Jordan-Peugeot        8
7 Sauber                7
8 Tyrrell-Yamaha        5
9 Footwork-Hart         1


Pos  Driver             Nat         Team/Car                     Time
 1   Marcel Tiemann     D  Opel Team BSR-Dallara 396-Opel       8:59.161
 2   Tom Coronel        NL Prema Powerteam-Dallara 396-Fiat      + 0.998
 3   Arnd Meier         D  Opel Team BSR-Dallara 396-Opel          2.467
 4   Rui Aguas          P  Tokmakidis Motorsport-Dallara 396-Opel  7.486
 5   Alessandro Manetti I  Supercars CM SRL-Dallara 396 Alfa       8.500
 6   Soheil Ayari       F  Graff Racing-Dallara 396-Opel           9.792
 7   Anthony Beltoise   F  Beltoise Racing-Dallara 396-Fiat       12.578
 8   Alberto Scilla     I  Shannon Racing Team-Dallara 396-Opel   23.997
 9   Oliver Martini     I  Luciano Pavesi Team-Dallara 396-Fiat   53.703
10   Christian Menzel   D  Shannon Racing Team-Dallara 396-Opel   -1 lap
11   Sebastien Mordillo F  Venturini Racing-Dallara 396-Fiat       1
12   Andre Couto        P  Prema Powerteam-Dallara 396-Fiat        2
13   Andrea Boldrini    I  Shannon Racing Team-Dallara 396-Opel    2
14   Michele Gasparini  I  E.F. Project-Dallara 396-Fiat           2
15   Esteban Tuero      RA Coloni-Motorsport-Dallara 396-Alfa      3
16   Joao Barbosa       P  Prema Powerteam-Dallara 396-Alfa        4
17   Manuel Giao        P  Opel Team G+M-Dallara 396-Opel          5
18   Jarno Trulli       I  Opel Team KMS-Dallara 396-Opel          8
19   Tommy Rustad       N  Tatuus SRL-Dallara 396-Fiat            10
20   Gianluca Paglicci  I  Shannon Racing Team-Dallara 396-Opel   22
21   Nick Heidfeld      D  Opel Team BSR-Dallara 396-Opel         22

Out in 1st lap:
     Paolo Ruberti      I  Team Ghinzani-Dallara 396-Fiat
     Wolf Henzler       D  Josef Kaufmann Racing-Dallara 396-Opel
     Emmanuel Clerico   F  Shannon Racing Team-Dallara 396-Opel
     Davide Campana     I  Racing for Europe-Dallara 396-Opel
     Jeremy Charon      F  Charon Racing-Dallara 396-Fiat

FL:  Andrea Boldrini 1:34.654 (=126.575 kph)
Pole setter Jarno Trulli led the race by a wide margin until lap 6, when he became slower through a mechanical failure. He defended the lead until the 16th lap. Then the 18 years old Agentinien Esteban Tuero saw a gap in "Loews Corner" where no gap was. And this was the end of Trulli's race. Tuero, who was second in qualifying could continue, but had another collision with the German Marcel Tiemann, when they were fighting for the lead three laps before the finish. This was the out for the young Argentine and Tiemann whose car had no damage from the collision could win the race before Dutchman Tom Coronel.

TOURING CARS (Silverstone):- Volvo and Audi triumphed during two thrilling rounds, with wins for Briton Kelvin Burt and Frank Biela of Germany. Burt beat the BMW of Robert Ravaglia in round seven - the first victory of 1996 for a two-wheel drive car. Biela made the most of his four-wheel drive Audi to claim round eight in tricky damp conditions. The win enabled the German to extend his championship lead to 36 points over Italian Ravaglia, who again came second in round eight.

Round seven result:          mins secs
 1 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850 29:22.40
 2 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  @   0.66
 3 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc @   5.14
 4 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 @   6.52
 5 A Menu       Swi Renault L @   7.14
 6 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall  @  15.42
 7 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4   @  17.87
 8 W Hoy        GB  Renault L @  18.30
 9 J Kaye       GB  Honda Acc @  18.97
10 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall  @  20.23

Round eight result:           mins secs
 1 F Biela      Ger Audi A4    37:05.75
 2 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i    @:02.32
 3 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4     @:15.01
 4 A Menu       Swi Renault L   @:25.63
 5 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850   @:49.85
 6 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall V  @:50.19
 7 P Radisich   NZ  Ford Mondeo @:50.47
 8 J Kaye       GB  Honda Acc   @:53.01
 9 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc   @:54.12
10 R Kaye       GB  Vaux'll C  @1:07.95

ITC:- Italy's Alessandro Nannini set the pace during Friday's qualifying for this weekend's rounds of the International series at Estoril in Portugal. Nannini edged out Alfa Romeo teammate Michael Bartels by just 0.079s, with Nicola Larini completing an Alfa 1-2-3."I made a small mistake at the chicane but, considering we were running on hard compound tyres, this is a very good time," insisted Nannini. Finn JJ Lehto was fourth fastest ahead of three other Opel Calibras.

TOURING CARS:- Championship leader Frank Biela heads for the North West this Bank Holiday weekend knowing he will have to work harder than ever in his 4wd Audi A4. Biela leads with 96 points, 36 clear of second-placed BMW ace Roberto Ravaglia, but the dominant Audis must carry an extra 30kg from round 9 onwards. BMW have looked strong throughout the season, with 1993 BTCC champion Jo Winkelhock winning twice so far. He and teammate Ravaglia will be sure to make the most of the rule change.

Kelvin Burt at last turned his great lap times into a victory when he became the first Briton to win a BTCC race this season, with a win at Silverstone. The Volvos have been pacesetters in all test sessions and Swede Rickard Rydell currently lies third in the standings after some consistent race results. The Renault Lagunas are expected to go well on Monday with Swiss star Alain Menu something of an Oulton specialist. "It is probably the best circuit in Europe," says triple Oulton winner Menu.

Defending champion John Cleland will be chasing a podium place with the new Vectra now showing good pace in testing. Ford's Paul Radisich and newcomer Steve Robertson have also been working hard with the new V6 Mondeo although results have not yet been forthcoming. David Leslie and James Kaye could spring a surprise in the Honda Accords which went well at Oulton last season. Watch out too for Tim Harvey in his Peugeot 406, keen for a good result as he competes in his 150th BTCC race.

26.05.96 - TOURING CARS (Oulton Park)
Alain Menu topped the times in final official testing for Bank Holiday Monday's races but admitted the Audis could still take charge on the day. Menu, lap record holder at the circuit, went round in a quick 1 min 41.132 secs inside his qualifying mark of last year. "I'm confident I can get a good grid position if it's dry but, if it is wet, we will all be playing second fiddle to the Audis," insisted the Swiss driver. The 4wd Audis were quickest in the damp afternoon test session.

Final official testing:      mins secs
 1 A Menu       Swi Renault L 1:41.132
 2 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 1:41.766
 3 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850 1:41.824
 4 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc 1:41.920
 5 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i  1:41.972
 6 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  1:42.009
 7 F Biela      Ger Audi A4   1:42.283
 8 T Harvey     GB  Peugeot   1:42.416
 9 P Radisich   NZ  Ford Mond 1:42.496
10 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall  1:42.593
11 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall  1:42.922
12 P Watts      GB  Peugeot   1:43.258

The Audis of series leader Frank Biela and John Bintcliffe made light work of a 30kg weight handicap by dominating a wet qualifying session for round nine. BMW's Jo Winkelhock led the two-wheel-drive charge in his 320i ahead of Rickard Rydell's Volvo 850. Biela completed the double to take pole for round 10, his fifth of the season, ahead of Winkelhock and Rydell. Richard Kaye emulated Biela, taking the Total Cup qualifying honours for both of Monday's two 16 lap races.

Round nine qualifying session:mins secs
 1 F Biela      Ger Audi A4   1:51.276
 2 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4   1:51.592
 3 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i  1:52.518
 4 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 1:53.106
 5 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall  1:53.194
 6 A Menu       Swi Renault L 1:53.240
 7 K Burt       GB  Volvo 850 1:53.275
 8 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall  1:53.300
 9 P Radisich   NZ  Ford Mond 1:53.449
10 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc 1:53.661
11 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  1:54.165
12 W Hoy        GB  Renault   1:54.446

Round 10 qualifying session: mins secs
 1 F Biela      Ger Audi A4   1:51.163
 2 J Winkelhock Ger BMW 320i  1:52.161
 3 R Rydell     Swe Volvo 850 1:52.280
 4 J Bintcliffe GB  Audi A4   1:52.535
 5 A Menu       Swi Renault L 1:52.537
 6 R Ravaglia   It  BMW 320i  1:52.558
 7 J Thompson   GB  Vauxhall  1:52.666
 8 P Radisich   NZ  Ford Mond 1:53.150
 9 W Hoy        GB  Renault   1:53.286
10 P Watts      GB  Peugeot   1:53.300
11 J Cleland    GB  Vauxhall  1:53.459
12 D Leslie     GB  Honda Acc 1:53.464

F.RENAULT:- Series leader David Cook crashed his Tatuus Renault on his final qualifying lap for the Ultrafilter Formula Renault race at Oulton Park, having clinched pole position for Monday's fifth round.

F3:- Norwich's Ralph Firman was the only driver to lap inside 42 seconds as he took pole position for both rounds five and six of the British F3 Championship Firman, chasing his first win this year in the Stewart Racing Dallara, headed Juan Pablo Montoyo in first qualifying at Brands Hatch and Nicolas Minassian in qualifying for race two.

INDY 500:- American Buddy Lazier picked up his first IndyCar victory at the 80th Indianapolis 500. Lazier, whose best previous finish here was 14th in 1992, rode his Reynard-Ford to victory seven-tenths of a second ahead of Davy Jones. Richie Hearn was third followed by Alessandro Zampedri, Roberto Guerrero and Chilean Eliseo Salazar. Lazier was appearing in his first race since suffering injuries during a practice-session crash in March.

ITC:- Italy's Alessandro Nannini claimed a double victory in Estoril, the firstsuccess of the year for Alfa Romeo. Nannini finished ahead of his teammate Giancarlo Fisichella in the first race and again led from start to finish in the second, which included a re-start. Race two was stopped after a 13-car pile-up on the first lap. German Klaus Ludwig crossed the line in second place but was relegated to 11th for pushing off Fisichella. Opel driver Uwe Alzen took the runner-up spot.

28.05.96 - TOURING CARS
British driver Kelvin Burt, rushed to hospital after being concussed during the Touring Car Championship, should be released later this week. The 28-year-old, unconscious for 15 minutes after his Volvo 850 car slammed into a trackside barrier at 120mph, was said to be "comfortable". X-rays have revealed no broken bones or significant internal injuries and the hospital are hoping to discharge him within the next few days.

Damon Hill will be determined to return to his winning ways when the seventh round of the FIA Formula One World Championship gets underway on Sunday. Hill retained his 21-point lead despite retiring in Monaco, with most of the top drivers falling by the wayside in an incident-packed 75-lap race. "We were very disappointed," admitted the Williams driver. "But at least none of my nearest rivals scored points." Teammate Jacques Villeneuve, second in the series, makes his Barcelona debut.

The Williams team have confirmed that Damon Hill's retirement from the Monaco GP was due to an oil pump failure. They carried out full tests once the engine was back at their Viry-Chatillon HQ, rather a rare experience with their last race failure in the '93 Italian GP. Williams have a good record in Barcelona, first used for the Spanish GP in 1991 and won by Nigel Mansell.Williams went on to win the race three more times before Michael Schumacher won it for Benetton last season.

Michael Schumacher has grabbed pole position from Damon Hill in the last two grands prix but has yet to win. The defending champion still trails in third place in the Championship, with two runners-up places to his credit despite still developing his Ferrari. Frenchman Jean Alesi was stung into his best form in Monaco after criticism of his early efforts for the Benetton team. He led for a time in Monaco before stopping with a suspension problem and could be a real threat in Barcelona.

Damon Hill won the Spanish Grand Prix two years ago and returns to the Circuit de Catalunya with enthusiasm. "I think the circuit is great, especially as it is so modern. The only shame is we don't get a larger crowd so it tends to be a low profile event." Teammate Jacques Villeneuve spent one day at the track last December and was complimentary. "It is a pretty good track with one straight line, very long." The straight, which is 514 metres long, was added just before last year's race.

Many drivers head for Barcelona hoping to erase unhappy Monaco memories. Among them will be talented Dutchman Jos Verstappen in the Arrows and Rubens Barrichello, so often impressive in his Jordan, who both crashed out on lap one. Martin Brundle, who spun his Jordan on lap 31, and Gerhard Berger who stopped with gearbox failure in the Benetton on lap 10 will also hope for better luck. Luca Badoer was given a two-race ban, suspended for three races, following his collision with Jacques Villeneuve.