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Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 January 2006, 12:08 GMT
Ferrari upbeat at new car launch
Ferrari's team manager Jean Todt, Brazilian driver Felipe Massa, chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, and Michael Schumacher
Ferrari put on a united front in Mugello after a difficult 2005
Ferrari have launched their new 248 F1 car first seen in testing last week.

Michael Schumacher took to the team's Mugello test track track to show off the car Ferrari hope will restore their fortunes after a disappointing 2005.

Designer Aldo Costa said he was "very happy" with the car, which is more compact, lighter and has improved aerodynamics and suspension.

Ferrari announced that Rory Byrne, Costa's predecessor, would be staying on for two more years as a consultant.

The South African's contract was due to end this year, and Italian Costa was in charge of developing the new 248 F1's design.

Technical director Ross Brawn said: "We've made the final step we wanted to make where Aldo is totally responsible."

We have the car, the drivers, the financial means, so there is no excuse not to get back to where we were
Ferrari sporting director
Jean Todt

Brawn joined Ferrari from Benetton at the same time as Byrne after both had helped Schumacher win his first two titles.

Like sporting director Jean Todt, his contract expires at the end of the year, but the Briton said: "I'm very happy at Ferrari, very pleased with the way things are and would very much like to be involved with Ferrari in the future."

Todt has said he wants to focus on making 2006 a success for Ferrari before considering his future with the team.

Schumacher, 37, has pondered his own future recently, hinting that he may not continue beyond this season if Ferrari are not competitive.

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo said: "It will be for Michael to decide. I personally think he is more than capable of doing two more years in F1.

"If he decides to continue, we'll be happy. If he decides to go, we will be disappointed but will understand."

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