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  Schumacher tipped for F1 success
Updated 05 March 2004, 18.15
Michael Schumacher is the defending champion
Michael Schumacher is still the man all other drivers will have to catch when the Formula One season begins again.

His Ferrari has set a lap record on the Melbourne track in Australia where the season's opening Grand Prix takes place this weekend.

Williams duo Juan Pablo Montoya and Ralph Schumacher should push him close, but may take points from each other.

But McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen is likely to be his closest challenger as long as his car is reliable enough.

The Finn has said he's not sure that the team's car will be good enough at the start of the season, although his team say they ready to go.

The two Williams drivers will be near the front
The two Williams drivers will be near the front
His teammate David Coulthard has a lot to prove in his final season at McLaren before he is replaced by Montoya.

The Columbian is one of the few drivers with a reputation as good as Michael Schumacher's on the track, although Montoya has been known to make mistakes.

If he can cut those out of his driving style then he could mount a serious title challenge.

The only English driver on the grid is Jenson Button and his BAR car is thought to be much stronger this year.

It's been going really well in testing and could even net Button his first ever Formula One podium place.

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