|© AP Photo/Mark Baker
Mark Webber has hit back at the comments made by Helmut Marko, indicating that the Red Bull motorsport advisor had never supported the Australian in his career.
Marko had said that the Australian driver has “on average two races per year where he is unbeatable” before trailing off as he has “a little trouble with the pressure that this creates.”
Webber won two Grands Prix in 2012 - both recorded in a span of four races mid-season – and consequently emerged as a title contender at the time. But in the last eight races the 36-year-old driver accumulated just 47 points while teammate Sebastian Vettel scored 141 in those outings.
“Look, everyone at this level has their own agendas and it’s been evident for a long time now that I’ve never been a part of Marko’s,” Webber said of the remark.
Webber will be participating in his seventh season with Red Bull, this time with a new race engineer after Ciaron Pilbeam left for Lotus.
Simon Rennie, who was at the receiving end of Kimi Raikkonen’s criticism over the radio in Abu Dhabi last year, will replace Pilbeam.
Over the winter, furthermore, Webber has had a 40cm titanium rod removed from his right leg, which was put in place following a road accident late in 2008.
“The surgery went very smoothly and my recovery was exceptional,” he said. “I had a few weeks off from my normal training schedule but I was able to ease myself back into it by the first week of January and now I’m back into it properly.
“I didn’t really know what to expect from having it removed, apart from my own peace of mind, but I’m very happy that some of the niggles and pain I’ve sometimes experienced with my training over the past three years already seem to be a thing of the past,” he added.