Newey Fancies Webber Stay in 2012
The Australian is currently the only important member of the Red Bull Racing organization without a contract for the 2012 season, and the man behind the team's recent success in the Great Circus would very much fancy Webber's stay at Milton Keynes for another season running.
“I'm hoping Mark continues next season,” said Newey, the man who designed the quickest F1 cars in consecutive seasons, between 2009 and 2010. “Apart from being a great person, his contribution has been significant. He's been a pillar of the team from the start. Seb is very perceptive in his feedback in some regards and Mark is very perceptive in other areas. We listen to both and it helps the car.”
According to Newey, Webber's current struggles in the 2011 season are mostly related to the new Pirelli tires, which he needs more time to adapt to, as compared to teammate Sebastian Vettel. However, he tipped the Australian to get back into winning contention in the months to come and provide his teammate with a decent competition for the world title this year.
“At the moment he (Vettel) is really on top of his game. It's certainly not a case that Mark has been driving any slower – that's for sure. Mark's just taken a bit longer to adapt to the Pirelli tires but the gap is closing,” he added.
In recent weeks, news about Webber's potential contract extension with Red Bull have been quite contradictory, but the Aussie's last comment hinted to a likely stay in 2012. Otherwise, a future destination for the 34-year old includes Ferrari, where Webber would team up with Fernando Alonso. That rumor was however denied by Luca di Montezemolo recently, who confirmed the Brazilian's stay at Maranello at least until the end of 2012.