F1 » 1 May 2012
Webber still wanted by Ferrari?
Could Mark Webber still be a potential target for Ferrari, despite the rumours linking Sergio Perez to Felipe Massa's saet?
Mark Webber could yet end his F1 career as a Ferrari driver after rumours resurfaced linking the Australian to Felipe Massa's seat at Maranello.
According to various reports in the Spanish media, Webber may have already agreed terms to switch from Red Bull Racing to Ferrari for the 2013 season, allowing the Prancing Horse to continue grooming Sergio Perez for what many see as an inevitable graduation to partner Fernando Alonso.
While there is still a possibility that Perez will be named as Massa's direct replacement for 2013, the Mexican is only just starting his second season in the top flight, and Ferrari may want him to continue learning the ropes at Sauber before bringing him into the fold at Maranello, thus creating an opening for Webber, who has long been touted as a potential target for the Scuderia, but always opted for a one-year extension with RBR.
Once again out of contract at the end of the season, the seven-time grand prix winner insists that his appetite for the sport remains undimmed, but will want a competitive car next season if he is to leave Red Bull. Although his decision to depart may be forced by the performances of Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne at Toro Rosso, it is by no means certain that Webber would consider Ferrari of suitable potential for a move, given its recent struggle to match the like of RBR and McLaren.
Although Alonso has already taken a win this year – one more than Webber – it came in unlikely circumstances during a wet Malaysian Grand Prix where, to underline the unexpected result, the F2012 came under heavy pressure from Perez's Sauber. Webber, meanwhile, has finished fourth in each of the four races held so far this season, and currently sits third overall, five points ahead of the Spaniard. Unlike 2011, however, Webber remains in touch with team-mate Vettel, who moved back to the top of the standings after his Bahrain race win, but only leads by five points from the Australian.
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