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Webber: It's going to be tough, but it'll be good

NEWS STORY
26/11/2013

Mat Coch writes:

After twelve years in Formula One, the Brazilian Grand Prix was Mark Webber's last before moving to endurance racing with Porsche for 2014. The decision signals a new chapter in the Australian's career, one which will take him back to Le Mans for the first time in fifteen years.

It's an event Webber is looking forward to, despite being the venue of perhaps two of his biggest shunts. Competing for Mercedes in 1999 an aerodynamic fault on the car saw Webber back-flip off the circuit during qualifying vaulting the barrier before landing in trees near the Indianapolis corner. It was a feat he repeated during warm-up on the Saturday morning, this time ending upside down at the end of the Mulsanne straight.

"I think those cars were very dangerous in that era," Webber admitted to Pitpass when asked about the prospect of returning to La Sarthe. "We had a lot of cars ‘flying’ in the late nineties.
"(But) you can't wrap yourself in cotton wool," he shrugged. "I'm not thinking about the negatives, I'm thinking about the positives of having some great memories with Porsche."

Victory at Le Mans is just one of the memories he hopes to gain with Porsche as the German marque looks to topple the dominance of Audi in the World Endurance Championship.

"It's in its embryotic stages now," he explained of the challenge ahead of him. "It's new, super new. All the workshops, everything is new.

"The attraction for me there is the cars are super, super quick, (and) very, very rewarding to drive on the limit for a long period of time," added the two-time Monaco Grand Prix winner. "I wanted to do a category that was in terms of performance just a little bit below F1, which I believe it is."

The experienced Australian however realises it won't be a walk in the park, even with a company like Porsche.

"There's a lot of things I still need to learn," he admitted. "Hopefully I'll learn those quite quickly because after Formula One it's not easy to find the right category that will stimulate you after these cars. And I think these are the best category to do.

"It's going to be tough, we know we've got some very, very hard opposition in Audi, but it'll be good."

He saved a final word for countryman Daniel Ricciardo, the man who will replace him at Red Bull.

"We've had some chats but he knows he wants to do it his way," said the Australian. "He'll be very successful. It's all there for him to go and make some great results.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by The Rumble Strip, 26/11/2013 20:56

"Personally a sad loss, if for the fact that he is one of only eight drivers that I have ever seen win a race live.

Perhaps not the greatest that ever lived but one that, on his day, could and did blitz the field and more importantly related to and respected the British fans.

Good luck Aussie Grit.
"

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