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Home pressure won't faze Webber

ESPNF1 Staff
February 27, 2012 « Williams admits Newey 'mistake' | Van der Garde and Gonzalez join Caterham GP2 »
Mark Webber: "Irrespective of where the first race is, I want to win it" © Sutton Images
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Mark Webber says that his disappointing record in the Australian Grand Prix will not affect him when he takes part in his home race next month.

Webber has never finished on the podium in his home race despite having finished in the top three on 30 occasions in his career so far. After two tests the general consensus is that Red Bull will be at the very least challenging for victory at the first race of the season, and Webber told the official Formula One website that his past record will have no bearing once he's in the car in Melbourne.

"You have some candidates who have never made it good back home: Sebastian (Vettel), Jenson (Button), and Rubens (Barrichello), you name it," Webber said. "Irrespective of where the first race is, I want to win it and I am really excited to start the season. Sure there is a bit more tension at the home race, but in the car you do your thing wherever you are. I am not going to let anything distract me in Melbourne. That is the plan."

There could soon be pressure on Webber from other sources as Toro Rosso continues to search for a potential replacement when he decides to retire. Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne replaced Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi in a move that appears to give Webber at least two more years before a change would be considered, but he says outside pressure will always be there if he doesn't deliver results.

"The most important thing for Mark Webber is that I perform. The rest I can't control, so I'll just look after myself. When you are in front in Formula One you are always under intense scrutiny. Every corner is analysed. If teams don't like a driver's style or discipline it does not matter who is waiting in the wings - you are out anyway. Teams will always look at what's best for them as drivers are a huge part of the team. I respect that and will focus on 2012 in this fashion."