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Porsche denies Webber rumours

ESPN Staff
April 16, 2013 « Tensions rise in Bahrain as police clamp down on dissent | Kovalainen rejoins Caterham as reserve »
Mark Webber does not have a contract for 2014 at the moment © Sutton Images
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Porsche has denied rumours it has signed Mark Webber to lead its assault on the World Endurance Championship and Le Mans 24 Hours from 2014 onwards.

After Red Bull's team orders controversy in Malaysia and an error-ridden weekend in China, speculation on Sunday night linked Webber to a drive with Porsche's new LMP1 project in 2014. Webber last raced at Le Mans with Mercedes in 1999 before getting a break in Formula One, but Wolfgang Hatz, Porsche's research and development chief, said the Australian in not part of the team's plans at the moment.

"We still have plenty of time to decide our driver line up," Hatz told Auto Action "We will use some of our own drivers and add some external drivers - we have two cars and need six drivers next year. There is a test plan, and for sure Mark Webber is not part of them.

"For now we are concentrating on the schedule - the plan is a mid-year roll-out of the car, and in the autumn we will finalise our driver combination. What we need is the best combination of drivers that fit together. LMP1 is a team sport, and if you have three of the quickest drivers, I am not sure that this is the best way. Yes, we can have perhaps some Formula 1 drivers in the future, but it is not necessary."

Porsche is returning to Le Mans for the first time since 1998 and has a long and illustrious history at the 24 hour race with 16 outright victories in its history.