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Webber: Age is no barrier

NEWS STORY
04/03/2013

Mat Coch writes:

Mark Webber has moved to once again distance himself from rumours of a pending Formula One retirement.

On a rolling one-year contract the Australian has faced growing speculation in recent years as advancing age seems to usher him out of the door at Red Bull. However, Webber, now the oldest man on the grid following the retirement of Michael Schumacher, sees no reason to consider stopping just yet.

"I am the oldest but I am not the most experienced. Jenson Button has done the most races," Webber told the Sun.

"I still feel 25. I know I am not but I feel young. I don't feel as though I am getting tired when driving the car. I feel good," he continued. "I don't see this as my last year in Formula One. I have signed one-year contracts for the last four-years here even when I am fighting for the world championship."

A Manchester United fan, Webber sees parallels between his own career and that of veteran Ryan Giggs, who will chalk up his 1,000th game for the Red Devils when he next steps on the football pitch.

"What he has achieved shows discipline and work-rate," said Webber. "Sir Alex Ferguson has done incredibly well for those players like Giggs and Paul Scholes.

"They are very selfish in terms of the consumption of energy," he explained. "Those guys are brilliant. You see Fergie bringing on Giggsy to add a cool head or a little bit of control.

"It is all about knowing when to turn it on. Am I absolutely as fast and raw and feeling as I did when I was 22? Probably not. But am I more calculated and composed? Yes. Definitely. For example, I was able to close it out at Monaco last year. It is a tough race but I closed it out and was in control."

Last month Webber refuted suggestions that he was looking to move in to endurance racing with Porsche when the German marque makes its return to racing next season. "I'm aware of Porsche's return to sports prototype racing and Le Mans in 2014," he told Pitpass. "It's an exciting prospect and fantastic news for endurance racing.

"I'm not thinking about anything other than 2013 and the first race of the year in Melbourne," he added. "It's how I've played every year of my career and I'm sure if I continue to do that the future will take care of itself."

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