Mark Webber may have revealed the identity of the man set to replace him in the Red Bull line-up next season.... Or he could have been having a little fun with journalists clamouring to be the first to break the news.

With Red Bull Racing backtracking on its intention to name the Australian's successor by the end of August, the debate will roll on to Monza next month, but it would appear that no-one told Webber that he had to keep his counsel for a few more weeks.

Speaking in a pre-race interview with Australia's Channel 10, the veteran gave the biggest hint yet that Red Bull would opt for one its own rather than plumping for a former world champion to partner Sebastian Vettel in 2014.

"The decision is made," Webber told reporter James Allen, "We all know who it is. I'm happy with that decision. It's good for him and it's good for Australia."

All of which points towards Daniel Ricciardo being called up from Toro Rosso to fill one of the prime seats for next season... unless Webber was deliberately creating a smokescreen to deflect the media from Red Bull's real intentions.

Both team principal Christian Horner and technical chief Adrian Newey brushed off follow-up questions in the wake of Vettel's fifth win of the current campaign.

"There is plenty of speculation around but nothing has been signed yet," insisted Horner. "The situation is that we have time to contemplate our selection and there will be no announcement before Monza.

"Mark is not privy to all of our discussions with the drivers but when we are comfortable to announce the decision then we will announce it," he added. "We still haven't fixed anything. We're taking our time to evaluate all our options, and we've been surprised about what those options are."

While pointing out that no F1 driver had ever enjoyed the luxury of appointing his own successor, Horner did appear to pour cold water on the idea that Kimi Raikkonen could be Red Bull-bound.

"Kimi is without doubt a class driver, but we are also thinking of the future, and there are so many things we have to take into account," Horner told Sky Sports F1 on Sunday. "He's driven very well this season, probably better than last year, but he's very much his own man as well."

Ricciardo spent the four-week F1 hiatus as the paddock's tip to succeed Webber, but was not confirmed, as expected, at Spa. He continues to play a straight bat when asked about his chances of beating out the likes of Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso for the drive.

"Until I've been given the nod and it's all settled, I'm not going to get excited," the younger Australian insisted earlier in the weekend, "I've learnt that, until something is signed, sealed and delivered then it isn't concrete and, until it is, I'm not getting my hopes up."

The key to the 2013 'silly season' could rest with Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz, who is apparently still on holiday and yet to rubber stamp RBR's decision, hence an announcement being put on hold until early September.


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