Red Bull deny Webber exit

2013-03-27 21:18
Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel (AP)

London - Red Bull have dismissed reports that Australian Mark Webber is certain to leave the Formula One world champions at the end of the season after Sunday's Malaysian Grand Prix team orders furore.

"It's pure speculation that Mark will not drive with the team in 2014," Red Bull said when asked about comments by Webber's manager Flavio Briatore that he was sure the current line-up would not continue.

"Mark's contract has been renewed for the last few years on an annual basis - he has continually chosen to drive for the team each year and the team has similarly wanted to continue working with him as he is an excellent driver and a competitive racer.

"We are two races into the current season and it's far too early to be talking about 2014."

Webber's future at a team who have won the last three championships has been called into question after Sunday's race led to a breakdown in trust between the drivers.

World champion Sebastian Vettel overtook Webber, despite being instructed not to by the team because of the need to look after the tyres and save fuel.

Webber, at 36 the oldest driver in Formula One, had turned his engine down in response to the orders from the pitwall and was furious with the 25-year-old German for putting himself above the team.

Others, including Briatore, questioned who was really in charge at Red Bull.

The Italian, who was banned from Formula One after the Renault team he led were found to have ordered Brazilian Nelson Piquet junior to crash deliberately to help his team-mate Fernando Alonso, accused Horner of weakness in a RAI radio chatshow in Italy.

Red Bull pointed out that a weak principal would not have steered the team to three successive titles - a feat only ever managed by three other outfits - while managing such a competitive pairing.

The team added that the pairing of Webber and Vettel had won 35 races, taken 80 podiums and and 13 one-two finishes since their first season together in 2009.

"This successful period includes some spells of intense on-track rivalry between the two drivers, which began in Turkey 2010 and has seen both drivers ignoring team orders at different times," it said.

"The team has managed the situation each time in its own way behind closed doors."


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Hypothetically, given the same cars to drive, who is the most talented current Formula One driver in your opinion?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.