Heinz-Harald Frentzen was the surprise winner of today's French Grand Prix, beating Mika Hakkinen and Rubens Barrichello into second and third places.

The German took the lead only after pit-stops and a period behind the Safety Car, necessitated by a mid-race downpour. Having started under overcast skies, the race turned on its head as the conditions worsened, with several drivers having a chance to hit the front.

Title candidates Hakkinen and Michael Schumacher took their turns in fighting to the head of the pack but, at the flag, it was Frentzen who took the honours.

Barrichello, having started from the pole and led well until the intervention of the Safety Car, took his second podium of the year behind Hakkinen, in third.



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