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Last Updated: Monday, 15 May 2006, 09:49 GMT 10:49 UK
Schumi plays down Spanish GP blip
Michael Schumacher (left), Fernando Alonso (middle) and Giancarlo Fisichella
Schumacher remains in hot pursuit of Alonso in the drivers' race
Ferrari's Michael Schumacher shrugged off his defeat by Fernando Alonso at the Spanish Grand Prix as a minor blip in his world championship challenge.

Schumacher, 37, finished 18.5 seconds behind Alonso on Sunday and is now 15 points adrift of him in the standings.

"It is a long way to go until the end of the season. I am reasonably happy to lose only two points," said the German.

"You have to understand you cannot win every race, there are times when they are better than us."

Schumacher headed into Sunday's race fresh from wins at Imola and Nurburgring but saw his confidence quickly evaporate as Alonso dominated from start to finish.

It is a long year to go and we will keep fighting to try to win
Michael Schumacher
The relentless pace of pole-sitter Alonso offered Schumacher little chance of upstaging the Spaniard.

"You have to understand what is possible and what is not possible," Schumacher added.

"You can only try so much, you have to rely on your package and it wasn't working out."

But he still believes time is on his side and remains bullish on his championship chances.

"It is a long year to go and we will keep fighting to try to win."

Meanwhile, Felipe Massa finished in the top four for the third consecutive race to add more points to Ferrari's tally, although they now trail Renault by 19 in the constructors' standings after Giancarlo Fisichella made it a one-three for the French team.

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