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Mat Coch writes:
Straight talking Mark Webber has revealed he is no fan of the revised podium ceremony. Introduced after the British Grand Prix, the traditional national anthem and champagne spraying has been given a showbiz makeover, featuring an all-new podium and post-race interviews rather than television unilaterals.
The new ceremony has met with mixed reviews; though the immediacy of the interviews is welcome, their quality has left less of an impression. It came in for renewed criticism after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix when both Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel swore during the interviews.
"That will never go away," suggests Webber. "You are full of adrenaline, you are excited.
"You have just had an incredible grand prix in general in those cases, so I think sometimes you might not use the right language, but now we have to be mindful of that," he added. "It is another part of the weekend where you have to keep an eye on things."
Webber also has reservations about the podium as a whole, lamenting the new ceremony's showbiz glitz, preferring the traditional, more intimate procedure. "I certainly wasn't impressed at Silverstone with 1000 dignitaries up there. I think the podium should be for the drivers, no one else," he admitted. "A clear shot of celebration for the drivers and what they have achieved. Not having everyone stand in front and having their five minutes. That pissed me off."
The outspoken Australian is in favour of a more traditional process. "You need real flags," he explained. "The electronic flags look rubbish. You need real flags waving in the wind.
"Drivers (interviews) on the podium, I'm 50/50 on that."
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