Mark’s previews the 2013 Australian Grand Prix
After many months of car development and 12 days of winter testing, the 2013 Formula One season finally gets underway in Melbourne this weekend. The race will be Mark’s 12th Australian Grand Prix and he’s clear about his objectives.
“I’ve never finished on the podium at home,” he says. “I finished fourth last year and I’d like to go at least one place better on Sunday. I love racing at home and to stand on the podium and spray some bubbly in front of the Australian crowd would be fantastic.”
Form is particularly difficult to predict going into this first race weekend. Several teams showed good pace in testing, but it’s only when the action gets underway in Melbourne that we’ll start to get a true indication of the pecking order. “We think we have a good car,” says Mark, “but it’s hard to know where we are because we don’t know what other people have been doing in testing. Several teams turned in some quick times in Spain, but we don’t know what fuel levels they were running. We haven’t got to wait long to find out, but there are definitely a few pre-match nerves; I think that’s the same up and down the grid.”
The build-up to Mark’s home event has been busy and one of the highlights came last weekend when he drove Red Bull Racing’s show car at Eastern Creek near Sydney. He smashed the lap record by 5.5s.
“That was a bit of fun,” said Mark. “I last drove there in ’95 and it was nice to go back, although we could have lowered the mark by a few more seconds if we’d had KERS and the latest tyres. The rules only permit you to use demonstration tyres at PR events and they don’t give as much grip as the race tyres.”
Looking ahead to the race weekend, the weather is scheduled to be a bit cooler in Melbourne than of recent. The city has enjoyed a record run of nine consecutive days above 30 degrees, but the ambient is expected to drop into the low 20s for the on-track action and there’s even the chance of rain on Saturday. “You never know what the weather’s going to do in Melbourne,” says Mark. “But cooler temperatures would be welcome, particularly from a tyre point of view. What’s going to be important is to have a smooth weekend and to maximise the performance of the car. That’s the aim and we’ll then see where we are when the chequered flag drops.”
Alex Richardsonon March 14, 2013 Reply
I was never that much of an F1 fan as a kid. That is until i discovered Webber. He has such a great attitude, a true Aussie battler, and such a sincere and honest guy. Very proud to be Australian when i see him giving it his all. Its tough as a young student, but have saved up enough to head to Melbourne this weekend to cheer him on. Best luck to Webber, and thank you for being such a top bloke and a tough competitor!
matton March 14, 2013 Reply
Wishing you the best of speed for this weekend and the rest of the season.. Do us Proud Mark!
Stuon March 14, 2013 Reply
Look forward to a great race Mark. Hope the Melbourne weather doesn’t dampen spirits too much. Good luck!
NATALIA RINCONon March 14, 2013 Reply
I wish you luck this weekend, this year on the podium, you’ll see.!!!
kisses from barcelona
khaton March 14, 2013 Reply
We wish Mark a great and unforgetable season. He has all to win and quite particularly a strong mind. He has been very compétitive with broken leg and injured shoulder, he has long experience, so the best is to come. Be glad !
All Mark’s fans and supporters
Rob Faulkneron March 14, 2013 Reply
Good luck hope this is your season
Jill and Brianon March 14, 2013 Reply
All the very best for Melbourne and the coming season. Hope you achieve your ultimate goal this season, were behind you all the way. Good luck Mark x
Nataliaon March 15, 2013 Reply
Good luck Mark! You’ll overcome!!!
britton March 15, 2013 Reply
Good luck for the next days! I wish u the best and I´m absolutley sure, to see u this season often on the podium!! And the winner is….
Philon March 15, 2013 Reply
I’ve followed your career since day 1 and know your capable of taking this season out. He’s just taken the edge in the team since taking you out in Turkey. You had 3 wins a in a row coming and the championship in front of you. Take the team support back and work on every corner- get the job done.
Ranaon March 16, 2013 Reply
We are looking to se you on the podium at home. Enjoy the weekend. Good luck
Carolon March 17, 2013 Reply
Congratulations on achieving front row today Mark. We have followed you from the start and hope this is the year that you rightfully become World Champion. You always make us proud to be Aussies. Best of luck for 2013 Mark!