by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 224
AstON tO F1? Reports from the UK claimed Aston Martin was in talks with Red Bull to become its engine supplier with a strong of rebranded Mercedes units. It's a rumour denied by Merc boss Niki Lauda. It'LL BuFF Out When Romain Grosjean beached his car in the gravel during practice the Frenchman apologised to his team by grabbing a rag and a can of polish and cleaning it himself. tHe NeeD FOR sPeeD While some suggest Sunday was Jenson Button's last British Grand Prix, the former world champ has ruled out a move to Formula E, saying it lacks the 'smell, sound and speed' or proper racing. ANOtHeR NeW RACe Thailand has announced it wants a Grand Prix next year, according to its sports chief Sakol Wannapong GO eAst Set to host its first grand prix next year, contruction work on the street circuit in Baku, Azerbaijan, is reportedly began last week. WONDeR DOG Lewis Hamilton shared a picture of himself and dog Roscoe on his motorcycle. Ex-driver David Coulthard says Hamilton's rebellious nature is good for F1 and is making him a superstar. Mark Webber’s autobiography, ‘Aussie Grit’ (what else), released last week in Australia and shortly in europe, certainly answers most of the questions the Aussie felt unable to speak out on while he still drove for the Red Bull team. If you are inclined to take one of F1’s straight-talkers at face value, then the whole Vettel-Marko-Horner conflict was every bit as bitter and wearing as it appeared from the outside. Ultimately, Webber places more of the blame on the team, rather than rival Vettel, suggesting that team principal Christian Horner was powerless to control the overtly pro-Vettel pressure exerted by Helmut Marko, Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz’s day-to-day ‘representative’ at Red Bull Racing. One of the most telling revelations follows on from the infamous ‘Multi-21’ controversy at the 2013 Malaysian Grand Prix. Not only was Sebastian Vettel’s spontaneous podium apology not followed through on, but the team subsequently found itself reading a stern letter from the German’s lawyer, claiming that the team had breached his contract by giving him an unreasonable instruction/order. Marko had, in the interim, clearly intervened. Vettel’s personal follow-up that, while he respected Mark as a driver, he had no respect for him as a person, was the final straw, the day Webber belatedly concluded that the team had lost control; that the team – ie Horner, under pressure from Helmut Marko – could not control its two drivers. It was literally then that he decided to solve the problem for them, by retiring. Webber doesn’t hold back as he discusses the other controversies along the way – the Turkish GP clash; the Silverstone front wing swap, and so on. Given the high-profile nature of that clash of ideals and personalities across his several F1 seasons with Vettel at Red Bull, it is no surprise that it dominates the three-quarters of what is a compelling read that is devoted to his F1 career. Indeed, Red Bull’s management isn’t the only one to cop some harsh evaluation – Williams, to which he went with such high hopes, is revealed as an organisation “living off its past glories” and, as he puts it, providing his lowest time in F1. While it is those controversial moments which will attract much reader interest and review comment, ‘Aussie Grit’ captures much of the positivity of a colourful F1 career – the dramatic debut, with Minardi; the the Jaguar years, with a team punching above its weight; and not to forget GP wins at some of the classic F1 races, in particular Monaco, with Red Bull. That, of course, is only part of the Mark Webber story. The rest is about a kid from a little Australian town who wanted to get to F1; the uncharacteristic path that led there; the oft-repeated question – “How the f**k is a boy from Queanbeyan going to get into Formula 1?” – and the unique part that Webber’s partner Ann Neal played in making it happen. Their personal relationship, for so long hidden from the outside world, is discussed frankly – including the near-disastrous split which threatened to bring everything crashing down. From the early days of Formula Ford in Australia with father Al, through to the FF Festival win, Formula 3, the crucial help from an Australian international sporting star, the professionalism of the Mercedes sports car team and then the disastrous weekend at Le Mans in 1999 which threatened to destroy his career, the ‘Team Webber’ story is one of those books that’s hard to put down. 13 GPWEEK.com // 13 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: F1 >>> news BrieFly webber lifts the lid on the rb/vettel feud