Ralf Schumacher led from start to finish at the French Grand Prix on Sunday to take his second consecutive victory this season and strengthen his claim for the world championship title.

Ralf Schumacher led from start to finish at the French Grand Prix on Sunday to take his second consecutive victory this season and strengthen his claim for the world championship title.

The German won the European Grand Prix last week. This weekend, he finished ahead of his Williams team-mate Juan-Pablo Montoya for the team’s second consecutive one-two this season.

Defending champion Michael Schumacher finished in third place. Raikkonen was third, followed by David Coulthard and Mark Webber.

The Ferrari driver increased his lead to 64 points, with Kimi Raikkonen on 56 and Ralf Schumacher on 53. Montoya is fourth with 47 points. In the constructor’s race, Ferrari has 103 points, only three more than the Williams team, while McLaren is third with 85 points.

Michael Schumacher had a poor start, with Raikkonen passing him, but the German raced past both McLaren drivers after the third pit stop of the day. Coulthard looked set to finish fourth, but a refuelling hassle during his last pit stop forced him to drop back.

Rubens Barrichello had a rough day, spinning at the end of the first lap to drop to the back of the field. He managed to fight his way back to a seventh-spot finish. Olivier Panis claimed the final point-scoring position for Toyota.

his BAR lost power. His team-mate, Jacques Villeneuve, finished in ninth place.

Renault had a disappointing day with both cars retiring. Fernando Alonso suffered engine failure on lap 44 and Jarno Trulli retired three laps later with a throttle-feed problem.

Upfront it was a two-man battle, with Montoya keeping Ralf Schumacher under pressure. "We had a one-two last week and again today and hopefully the two of us can keep going. There will be plenty of circuits, which don't suit us, but we have a long test ahead of us. We are going in the right direction and hopefully we can continue it," said the younger Schumacher.

"I was able to disappear in the first stint, but the second stint the car didn't feel as good and Juan closed in. I saw Juan go into the pits and I asked if they could make a place for me because I knew if I stayed out he could pass me and I didn't want that to happen," said Schumacher.

"I wasn't comfortable with the car and I was calling the pits every half lap to see what I can do about it," said Montoya.

"It got better and I had the fastest lap. I needed another second but it wasn't there."

Original article from Car