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Barrichello happier with new HANS 04 Apr 2003

Rubens Barrichello (BRA) Ferrari F2002.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Sepang, 23 March 2003

The FIA has made it clear that teams must replace drivers who are not comfortable with the HANS head and neck support collar, but Rubens Barrichello says he is much happier with a revised system he tested in Barcelona last week.

"I have a similar system to what McLaren has and it's changed quite a bit," he said. "My problem is not just wearing HANS, it's the fact that I'm not locked inside the car. I like to be very tight inside the car and with the HANS I couldn't do that. With double seat belts, it seems that my problems are over. Even so, I think that the system should be for people who want to use it. But I have no problems."

Interlagos is unusual in that it is an anti-clockwise circuit, and there have been fears that this might present unforeseen further problems with the safety collar. Barrichello doesn't agree, however.

"At the beginning I thought I would have problems touching the HANS because I'm a guy who turns into the corner and I move my neck, but it doesn't seem to be a problem. I don't think it will interfere at the end of the day."

Justin Wilson and Minardi, and Ralph Firman and Jordan are also confident that they have solved their Malaysian HANS problems.