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Webber dismisses critics and sets sights on another victory 08 Jun 2012

Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Preparations, Montreal, Canada, Thursday, 7 June 2012 Race winner Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB8 celebrates.
Formula One World Championship, Rd6, Monaco Grand Prix, Race Day, Monte-Carlo, Monaco, Sunday, 27 May 2012 Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd6, Monaco Grand Prix, Practice Day, Monte-Carlo, Monaco, Thursday, 24 May 2012 Sergio Perez (MEX) Sauber.
Formula One World Championship, Rd7, Canadian Grand Prix, Preparations, Montreal, Canada, Thursday, 7 June 2012

Mark Webber has an extra incentive to become the first repeat winner of 2012 here at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, after bridling on Thursday at suggestions from some quarters that his Red Bull wasn’t legal when he won in Monaco a fortnight ago.

That follows the FIA’s ruling that the hole in the underfloor, ahead of the rear wheels, is no longer deemed acceptable having prior to Monaco been ruled legal. Red Bull have changed their floor this weekend to comply with the clarification that the governing body issued last week following threats of protests in the Principality.

“I’m happy to be called lots of things and I’m happy to have criticism about my driving and lots of stuff, but I will not take criticism in that respect,” he said. “It completely pisses me off to be honest, because the car has passed every single - every single - technical regulation after the race.

“All of the teams that were against it did not make any protest after Monaco, the car passed the test after Bahrain, the car passed the test after Monaco and now there has been a clarification on the rule, and the rule now is different and we had a car that was legal for the first part of the season and now the rule has been changed and we will start again.”

Webber, fresh from sky diving in a wind tunnel and then spectating at the Isle of Man TT last Saturday, said he loves driving at this track.

“It’s a good mixture, in terms of the street circuit sort of feel of it, but also with low-ish downforce. Obviously the cars won’t be in the Monaco configurations, so we’ll have to look for the top speeds. You still need a pretty good car here, there’s no question about that.

"There’s quite a bit of time to be gained and lost here if you get it together. I enjoy it here. It always throws up a bit of an oddball race. I think that we need to see how the marbles go, the brake wear, incidents, safety cars. It’s always been like that the Canadian Grand Prix. Even ‘the Nige’ - I think he (Nigel Mansell) turned the car off at the last corner, so there’s always drama at this event.”

Elsewhere, the smaller teams believe they can push back into the limelight here. Williams have a swoopy new rear wing to try with a much improved DRS system that Pastor Maldonado and Bruno Senna feel can make a big difference to their overall pace, while Sergio Perez thinks that Sauber can get back into the fight the way they did in Malaysia.

The Mexican did only three laps in FP1 last season before feeling dizzy in the wake of his Monaco accident, but says this year: “Hopefully this weekend can be a lot better. I think we have a very competitive car and we can fight for a podium here.”

David Tremayne

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