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2013 not my last year - Webber

ESPN Staff
July 11, 2012 « Singapore set to extend deal | Schumacher hints at extension »
Mark Webber won Sunday's British Grand Prix to move within 13 points of the championship lead © Press Association
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Mark Webber says that he is "looking to stay in F1 for longer" than his new one-year contract, and that he intends to end his career at Red Bull.

After holding negotiations with Ferrari about a possible switch in 2013, Webber signed a new one-year deal with Red Bull on Tuesday. Writing in his BBC column, Webber revealed that he has previously told the Red Bull hierarchy that he would drive for the team until the end of his career and that moving away could have affected his title challenge.

"Although I did have talks with Ferrari , staying with Red Bull was the right thing to do," Webber said. "I pretty much told Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz and team principal Christian Horner two or three years ago that I would finish my career with Red Bull. I'm sure everyone understands the lure of racing for Ferrari, but in the end there were just too many pros to staying at Red Bull Racing - it was as simple as that.

"I've been there since 2007, just two years after the team was formed, and we have built a fantastic team. We've won the last two drivers' and constructors' championships and we're right in the fight again this year. It's very hard to turn your back on that sort of performance. The fact that I am trying to win the championship this year was also a consideration - it would have been that bit harder to keep the momentum going if I was moving to a rival team."

And Webber added that he was hoping to continue racing in Formula One beyond the end of his next contract.

"Because I'm 36 this summer, people are always asking me when I'm going to retire. But I'm not thinking about that at all. The contract is just for one year, but I'm looking to stay in F1 for longer than that.

"It's an immensely challenging job trying to get the best out of a Formula 1 car and I'm competing with the best drivers in the world. It doesn't get much better than what happened on Sunday - how we won and who we beat. I have a lot of respect for Fernando Alonso. I said to a friend the other day: 'That was a nice podium shot from Silverstone - with Fernando on the right and Sebastian Vettel on the left.' How do you replace that when you're not racing anymore? Hopefully, I won't have to find an answer to that question for a while."