Red Bull had ‘minutes’ notice Webber was leaving

F1 Fanatic round-up

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Silverstone, 2013In the round-up: Red Bull team principal Christian Horner learned that Mark Webber was leaving the team just a few minutes before the announcement was made.


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Mark Webber leaves it late to tell Red Bull he is quitting F1 (The Guardian)

“‘An hour’s notice is a bit short,’ Horner said on Thursday night. After consulting his mobile phone he confirmed that in fact it was shorter than that, and a matter of only a few minutes.”

Christian Horner: “He?s obviously decided that the timing is right…” (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

“‘The guys at the factory are a bit more disappointed that they read it on the internet rather than heard something direct.’ Asked whether Webber had the option to stay at RBR he said: ‘We never got into that discussion.'”

Mark Webber Q&A ?ǣ 2014 and beyond (Mark Webber)

“Did you have options to stay in F1?
MW: Yes but since Formula One as a category wasn?t on my radar for 2014, they weren?t a consideration for me.”

Sebastian Vettel gives his full approval for Kimi Raikkonen to replace Mark Webber as his team-mate at Red Bull (The Independent)

“I think nobody could have a problem with Kimi as team-mate, except for Perez.”

Vettel keen for say on new team mate (BBC)

“I don’t know his situation in Lotus but we get along well. We have never been team-mates and I am not deciding whether he will be joining the team or not.”

Mark Webber a rare breed in F1 (The Telegraph)

Tom Cary: “He’s very down to earth; he’s actually one of the very few drivers that has chosen to make his base in the UK. He’s a full-on taxpayer here and there are no airs and graces about him – he’s not sauntered off to Monaco and stashing his money away.”

Raikkonen drops Red Bull hint (Sky)

“On the subject of being handed a free rein, Raikkonen said: ‘It’s one of the key points. Obviously you want to have a good car, but there are lots of small things that have to be right for yourself. They might sound like stupid, small things but I’ve been long enough in the business to know what I want and if those things aren’t right then that decision might be different.'”

2013 British Grand Prix – Thursday Press Conference (FIA)

Fernando Alonso: “This year we are a little bit dominated by the tyres? performance and the tyre issues that we face every weekend. Some weekends are hit by some tyres against the others but it seems that if you have a weekend where you make the tyre work properly and last properly throughout the race you have a better chance to win, so despite the performance of the car in the high speed corners or low speed corners, I think it will be a weekend over the next couple of races to make the tyres work in the maximum performance in qualifying and in the race, because sometimes you hit one of the two and it?s not enough so we need to improve in that aspect.”

Esteban Gutierrez, Sauber, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montreal, 2013Designer Morris to leave Sauber (Autosport)

“Head of concept design Eric Gandelin will take over the role at the start of next month, although the timing of [Matt] Morris’s departure from the squad has yet to be finalised.”

Q&A with Force India?s Adrian Sutil (F1)

“I wouldn’t say I’m more unlucky than others, but it?s true that there have been some races in the past where I should have achieved better results. Things like in Montreal shouldn’t happen. There was a chance to overtake Bottas as he had a bad exit out of the corner, but it didn’t work out and I unfortunately spun. Next time I would wait and overtake him on the straight because the speed was in my car.”

Bernie Ecclestone waives Nurburgring’s GP fee (The Times of India)

“Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone has waived the ??14 million (US$18m, ??11m) entry fee to allow the insolvent company which owns the Nurburgring race track to host the German Grand Prix on July 7, according to a report on Wednesday.”

McLaren and Honda rekindle relationship that was winning formula (FT, registration required)

“The Japanese carmaker will supply McLaren?s 2015 engines from its Tochigi research and development facility in Japan. Honda will have some of its people embedded at McLaren headquarters in Woking, Surrey, but the hub of the research and design will be carried out in Japan.”

MotorSportsTalk?s predictions: British GP (NBC)

“Most to prove: Giedo van der Garde. Montreal was a pretty horrendous race for him as he collided twice with drivers who were trying to lap his Caterham. He needs to stay out of the stewards? office this weekend.”


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Comment of the day

@Girts on the all-important question of who will take Webber’s place at Red Bull:

I believe that Raikkonen is a serious candidate. I think that his dislike for PR stuff often gets exaggerated (partly by himself) and also that his attitude has changed after the sabbatical. Even before that, he spent eight years with teams that he theoretically should hate, according to his image.

I?m not saying that Red Bull?s PR events are going to make Raikkonen happy but he certainly wants to be in a car that?s capable of winning championships and I don?t think Lotus will ever be able to give him one, mainly because of the lack of money and also the recent loss of James Allison.

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On this day in F1

Victory in the non-championship Rouen Grand Prix went to Giuseppe Farina in a Ferrari 60 years ago today.

Images ?? Red Bull/Getty, Sauber

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71 comments on Red Bull had ‘minutes’ notice Webber was leaving

  1. Fisha695 (@fisha695) said on 28th June 2013, 0:07

    Reports earlier today (either with quotes from Webber or Mateschitz, forget which one) stated that Dietrich Mateschitz was well aware of the negotiations and actually helped Webber with guidance as to making the choice (and confirmed that RB will follow him as a personal sponsor).

    So while you can say that Webber should’ve told Horner though you can kind of understand why he didn’t, you gotta really question the way the team is ran when the actual owner of it didn’t even make Horner aware even after knowing for a few months.

    • Spinmastermic (@spinmastermic) said on 28th June 2013, 0:50

      Its almost like Mateschitz already knows whom he wants as Marks replacement (Kimi) and doesn’t need Horners input.

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 28th June 2013, 3:26

      Quite possibly we have to differentiate between knowing something on a personal basis and having been “officially” told on a business basis, no doubt the timing was driven by Porsche.

      • HoHum (@hohum) said on 28th June 2013, 3:52

        Having read the Kimi R interview I expect that Horner was hoping to sign Kimi before Mark announced his departure, Kimi now has a little more leverage than he would have had if Mark was prepared to stay another year with RBR

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 28th June 2013, 16:03

          on the drivers, its also possible that Red Bull now have a better negotiation position with other drivers (as they know Kimi is RBRs first choice), and at the same time its good for Kimis bargaining position vs Lotus!

      • BasCB (@bascb) said on 28th June 2013, 16:01

        As it seems that Red Bull might be supporting Mark at Porsche too, I think its well possible that Mateschitz had been in the know about a serious option of Webber going to Porsche and discussed the scenario with him @hohum.

        It rather shows how much Horner runs the team really. Vettel does what he wants, Marko overrules what Horner says (and then Horner changes his lines too), Webber rather goes over his head and discuss things with the boss. Curious how some people mentioned they saw Horner as being the right guy to take over from Bernie

    • frankus28 (@frankus28) said on 28th June 2013, 3:27

      Like any other ethical workplace, an employee-employer discussion should be held in confidence until the staff member actually hands in his/her resignation. I think Mateschitz acted honourably toward his employee and professionally towards his team.

    • Pennyroyal tea (@peartree) said on 28th June 2013, 3:37

      Horner is no team principle. For some time he didn’t had the pressure on top of him therefore you wouldn’t notice him, that said he had plenty of time to get costumed. In these past years he has showed that he isn’t up to the task, it must be a tough job but in the last 3 years there were numerous moments in which Horner looked powerless and oblivious to what his team is doing. I agree that he tries really hard just look in his face as he was launching the new Renault power unit. Horner has always tried to transpire leadership, confidence and honesty but all his efforts seem to have been undermined and highlighted by the Turkey clash, the front wing drama, the multiple team orders row, and in the end to make matters worse he often let his frustration speak louder thus hindering his status.
      Everyone has been saying that Raikkonen is destined to fill Webber’s seat, what if Raikkonen is also destined to reunite with Allison, this time as Red Bull’s Team Principle?

      • Tomsk (@tomsk) said on 28th June 2013, 9:39

        Principles are what Webber has, while Principals are something else entirely…Webber could have gone whinging to the press, but it’s Horner who’s done that.

        You may be right about Allison going off to Red Bull – I wonder if he’ll soon be making Adrian Newey’s tea and learning how to take over from him one day, while also acting as bait for Raikkonen…

      • HoHum (@hohum) said on 28th June 2013, 12:32

        I can’t muster any enthusiasm for Horner bashing, for a guy apparently lousy at his job he sure has a good CV and results record, maybe he knows more about it than we do.

      • Boomerang said on 28th June 2013, 19:14

        Mr. Mateschitz bypassed Horner completely. I wouldn’t be surprised if Horner leaves RB at the end of the season.

    • jackal40 (@jackal40) said on 28th June 2013, 12:31

      Sorry, but I don’t see how Horner can claim he only had “minutes” notification when RB and Webber were in contract negotiations. FTA-“Webber brought down the curtain on his 12-year F1 career just as Red Bull were about to enter into negotiations over a new one-year contract.”

      Given the way RB has treated Webber over that past few years – I have to ask why they are surprised? Best wishes in your new career, Mark. I might start watching La Mans again.

    • Keith Huitson said on 30th June 2013, 17:34

      I think after the malaysian grand prix, mark had no choice to arrive at his decision, there is no
      doubt that vettel is horners blue eyed boy, if shoe at been on the other foot, and mark disobeyed
      a team order, he would have been desciplined, horner should be the one to go now webber
      and as mark was no1 driver before vettel came he was badly wronged, with the lack of horners
      decision not to descipline vettel !!!!

  2. Oblong_Cheese (@oblong_cheese) said on 28th June 2013, 0:13

    Correction: Christian Horner had “minutes” notice that Webber was leaving.

    Deitrich Mateshitz has know for at least as long as Webber.

  3. Hairs (@hairs) said on 28th June 2013, 0:20

    I think that in years to come, if a book ever comes out from a well placed insider about the past few years at red bull, it’ll be a fascinating, or horrifying read.

    Webber and Horner ran a racing team together. If Horner only found out from a message a few minutes before the announcement, then it seems to indicate that relationship has broken down quite a bit. If Webber’s been dealing with the owner for months about this, it means both Vettel and Webber have been going over the head of the man who officially runs the team about almost everything. That’s very bad for his position with everyone else under his command.

    Having a loose cannon like Marko around isn’t helping the team’s image or its operations either.

    As for Newey, well he’s the man who allegedly demanded the swap of front wings, and he’s known as both a driven and egotistical figure.

    I’m willing to bet that all in all, it’s quite a toxic environment in there.

  4. Fitzroyalty said on 28th June 2013, 0:38

    Webber’s lack of notice to Horner may represent a lack of professional courtesy but it is about what Horner and Red Bull deserve. Webber’s loyalty and self-discipline have been impressive for years. As Keith Richards once sang, ‘I’m gonna walk before they make me run’…

  5. Jon Sandor (@jonsan) said on 28th June 2013, 0:48

    For some reason – perhaps because he speaks German? – everyone harps on Marko’s dislike of Webber. But it’s very obvious that Horner and Newey don’t care much for the guy either. I’m sure his habit of going over their heads to their boss contributed to that.

    • Solo (@solo) said on 31st July 2013, 11:08

      Yeah if anyone watched the subtle comments and body language would realize nether Horner nor Newey are too fond of him. The question about him going over their heads depends on how that occurred. Did he went over their heads because he felt they didn’t care to listen to him or did they start not caring because he went over their heads.

  6. Alex Bkk (@alex-bkk) said on 28th June 2013, 0:54

    It’s a bit difficult for me to swallow the fact that Webber’s decision was a surprise to Horner. If it was, then it sorta makes Horner look as though he’s completely out of the loop as to what’s actually going on with his drivers. It’ll be interesting to see how Horner and the rest of RBR treat Mark for the rest of the season and just as interesting to see Mark’s response should things turn a bit nasty.

  7. AlbertC (@albertc) said on 28th June 2013, 0:59

    Alonso using the word “tyre” five times in one answer = F1 2013…

  8. F1Yankee (@f1yankee) said on 28th June 2013, 1:18

    The guys at the factory are a bit more disappointed that they read it on the internet rather than heard something direct.

    A. horner never passes up the opportunity to lay blame or paint someone else as a villain

    B. the guys at the factory are just fine

    • Solo (@solo) said on 31st July 2013, 11:10

      Horner has being throwing such little nails at Webber for the last three years now. I’m surprised many people thought Horner was actually an ally of Mark in the team.

  9. Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 28th June 2013, 1:24

    Mark Webber leaves it late to tell Red Bull he is quitting F1 (The Guardian)

    Horner should be thanksfull that Mark decided so early in the season. They have 6 months to search for a new candidate, even if they were probably already looking at options, it’s clear and open this time, so it must be easier for them.

    Don’t see much difference between a couple of minutes or a whole day… what’s that gonna change for them?

    And afterall, Mark said that Dietrich was well aware of his decisions… so…

  10. Fisha695 (@fisha695) said on 28th June 2013, 1:45

    Hey Red Bull how about boycotting that young drivers test now!?

  11. Yappy said on 28th June 2013, 1:47

    So after Malay the media reported that Mark was going to Porsche next year only to be told ‘No’. Now it is a surprise?

    Hopefully Kimmi will drive for Red Bull to make this eras dream team. I can just see it. Kimmi and Vettel pushing each other for fastests lap upon fastest lap. Lapping the entire field 5 times over. Only to struggle with 10 laps to go on wets because they had burnt out all their tires. “Kimmi Vettel is faster than you” “Yeh well, watch this action”.

    • Joe Papp (@joepa) said on 28th June 2013, 5:11

      I can just see it. Kimmi and Vettel pushing each other for fastests lap upon fastest lap. Lapping the entire field 5 times over. Only to struggle with 10 laps to go on wets because they had burnt out all their tires. “Kimmi Vettel is faster than you” “Yeh well, watch this action”.


  12. Dellissima said on 28th June 2013, 2:26

    Just thought I’d share some cakes that I’ve been working on. I own a cake business, and someone asked for a McLaren cake, and another asked for a Silverstone cake (he’s going to silverstone)…

    On the McLaren cake I made a F1 style car out of icing – it’s completely edible!

    And the Silverstone one just features the design of the track

    Last year for the same guy we made a life sized Valentino Rossi helmet! All out of cake!

    If any of you guys have any feedback (positive or negative) then I’d love to hear it! :)

  13. nackavich (@nackavich) said on 28th June 2013, 3:17

    Ok, so to move away from Ref Bull for a moment:
    Who’s going to drive for Lotus next year?

  14. Coanda (@ming-mong) said on 28th June 2013, 3:49

    After 20+ years of hardcore F1 following I am glad Mark has left for a more pure form of racing category. F1 has become a joke, a toxic category driven by artificial racing.

  15. Red Bull should still be confident that they’ll have Mark Webber driving for them next year. 8 out of 10 times, Mark Webber stalls the getaway and ends up right back in the pack. Why should this be any different? ;)

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