17 May 2012
Webber doubts fans want different winners
Mark Webber has claimed that F1 fans could be turned off by the thought of the sport having too many different winners in one year.
While he admits to enjoying the unpredictability of the 2012 F1 season so far, Mark Webber has also expressed a concern that fans may be turned off by not seeing a real championship battle develop.
The Australian has yet to feature among the success stories through the opening five rounds of the campaign - and followed four consecutive fourth-place finishes with a disappointing run to eleventh in Spain at the weekend - but acknowledged that the uncertainty heading into every race has not only made it more interesting than any year in which one driver or team has dominated, but also keeps in the battle for the title, despite his lack of silverware.
"[There have been] five different winners in five different races, many different people getting points, so it's very tight at the top, with ten or so points covering the top five or six drivers," Webber told sportal.com.au, "It's very unusual as normally, in seasons gone by, you had a clear break of people who were going to be favourites for the championship, but it's very difficult to know which teams or drivers are going to be in the best position with three or four races to go."
Just 13 points separate the top five drivers, with Webber fifth overall behind co-leaders Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso, but no team has yet set out its stall as the most likely to pull away. McLaren started the season with two front row lock-outs and Jenson Button's victory in Melbourne, while Alonso won for Ferrari in Malaysia, Mercedes' Nico Rosberg in China and Webber's Red Bull team-mate Vettel in Bahrain, before Pastor Maldonado boosted Williams' resurgence with victory in Barcelona on Sunday.
Despite the unpredictability, however, Webber admits that not everyone will be held enthralled by the 2012 results.
"I think, for the fans, it's interesting, but I don't know if they will get sick of seeing so many different winners," he reasoned, "It's nice to have so many different winners, but also it's always good to have rivals, people fighting for the championship and having lots of different people always fighting. Let's see as the season goes on - maybe there will be some rivalries that come in the end, and some battles for the championship.
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