Web­ber an­nounces shock re­tire­ment

F1 Racing - - INSIDER -

Mark Web­ber has re­vealed that he will be hang­ing up the hel­met on his rac­ing ca­reer at the end of this year.

The news comes as some­thing of a sur­prise just three years into Web­ber’s post-F1 ca­reer as an LMP1 sport­scar driver with Porsche in the World En­durance Cham­pi­onship.

“Of course hang­ing up my pro­fes­sional rac­ing hel­met is a very big de­ci­sion but I’ve been ex­tremely for­tu­nate to re­ceive great coun­sel from two of the leg­ends of our sport, Sir Jackie Ste­wart and Niki Lauda, about the tim­ings of such a de­ci­sion,” Web­ber re­vealed.

“The tim­ing is right for me – you cer­tainly view things a bit dif­fer­ently when you get a bit older and your pri­or­i­ties in life change. As with my F1 ca­reer, it’s nice to mak­ing the de­ci­sion on my own terms.

“I’ve re­ally, re­ally en­joyed my time in the cock­pit with Porsche and could never have en­vis­aged hav­ing such a dy­namic re­la­tion­ship with my two team-mates in the 919, Timo Bern­hard and Bren­don Hart­ley. It’s been a sen­sa­tional three years and off the back of three con­sec­u­tive wins, I’m hop­ing we can con­tinue our good form and nish this year strongly.

“It’s an ab­so­lute hon­our for me to re­main with Porsche and whether it’s at the track or away from it, I’m look­ing for­ward to putting my 26 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence as a com­peti­tor to good use in my new role within the com­pany.”

Web­ber will re­main on board with Porsche as an am­bas­sador.

With nine grands prix wins to his name, Web­ber is the most suc­cess­ful Aus­tralian Formula 1 driver never to have won the World Driv­ers’ Cham­pi­onship. He did go close, in 2010, but fell vic­tim in the nal round to a com­bi­na­tion of a strat­egy mis­step and a fault­less race from Red Bull team-mate Se­bas­tian Vet­tel.

In­stead, Web­ber ended up third in the cham­pi­onship, a feat he would re­peat twice more be­fore ex­it­ing F1.

In LMP1 sport­scar rac­ing, Web­ber was un­lucky not to win the Le Mans 24 Hour in his rst year with Porsche. He was out of luck again last year, ended up in sec­ond place and part of a Porsche one-two.

While world cham­pi­onship suc­cess eluded him in his F1 ca­reer, he does leave the sport as a world cham­pion, hav­ing clinched last year’s World En­durance Cham­pi­onship with team­mates Bern­hard and Hart­ley.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.