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'Zero problems' after leg surgery - Webber

ESPN Staff
February 11, 2013 « Rory Byrne back helping Ferrari | Lotus looks competitive - Allison »
At Jerez Mark Webber returned to the car for the first time since his final surgery © Getty Images
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Mark Webber says he felt better driving a Formula One car than he thought he would after undergoing his final leg surgery over the winter for a break dating back to 2008.

Webber suffered a serious break while taking part in his Tasmania Challenge during the close season between 2008 and 2009. He has driven each season since then regardless, but it was only this winter that he finally had a metal rod removed from his leg.

He had to take some time out of his winter training schedule after the final surgery but he said in Jerez last week that he would be in peak physical shape by the start of the season.

"[I felt] really comfortable, the leg is no problem at all," he said after his first run in the new Red Bull. "I'm probably a little bit behind on condition, but not by much. I'll be ready to go in Melbourne, I'm completely on target for that. I felt better in the car than I thought I would.

"I was in the car for a long period, about two and half hours at one point, so it was a little stiff but that's normal. It will be fine and when the adrenaline is going there will be zero problems."

He said the leg never changed his approach to racing but that it was at the back of his mind in his free time.

"It never affected me when I was racing," he added. "It affected me when I was doing other sports such as water skiing and mountain biking because I knew it was not going to be beneficial to re-brake my leg with a rod in there. Now I have it out I'm not going to be crazy but it's a little bit of peace of mind from a recreational point of view. Also the mind is a great thing because I won't forget the pain I had when I broke my leg so I'm actually getting a bit wiser as I get older, believe it or not."