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World title nearly sewed up

HOCKENHEIM, Germany -- Ferrari is not
about to ease off even though Michael Schumacher seems to have a
fourth Formula One world title sewn up.

"Everybody at Ferrari is working in the same way that we
have for the past five years because that's the only way we know
how to work," the team's technical director Ross Brawn said at
the German Grand Prix on Friday.

"It's a delicate time, we've got a substantial lead in both
championships and we can only throw it away now.

"Whatever David (Coulthard) does, if we do a sensible job
it's very difficult for him," he told a news conference.

Schumacher leads McLaren's Coulthard by 37 points with 60
still up for grabs. That means he can afford to finish second
behind Coulthard in every remaining race.

If he wins his home grand prix on Sunday Schumacher will
equal Alain Prost's record of 51 wins and will also be just one
victory away from securing the 2001 title.

Brawn also said Ferrari had modified Schumacher and teammate Rubens Barrichello's cars for Sunday's race after the
German's crash in testing at Monza last week.

Brawn revealed that the front floor of the world champion's
car dropped onto the track before the second chicane at the
Italian track.

"It's the first time that we've run the car at such high
speed -- 345 to 350 kph -- and of course that exerts a lot more
load on those sorts of pieces so it's not a problem we'd seen at
any other time this year.

"We reinforced the floors for the second day of testing for
Rubens and we've done a lot of further modifications for here,"
added Brawn.

Schumacher escaped injury in the crash when his Ferrari
hurtled into the guardrails at high speed, ripping off the front
wheels and skidding into tyre barriers.

The German said on Thursday he had a stiff neck and sore
backside afterwards but was fit enough to play soccer this week.

Brawn said Ferrari would have a new aerodynamic package for
the Belgian Grand Prix in September and would probably be racing
a new engine in Sunday's race here.