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Webber to join Coulthard at Red Bull Racing 07 Aug 2006

(L to R): David Coulthard (GBR) Red Bull Racing RB1 and Mark Webber (AUS) Williams BMW FW27.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, German Grand Prix, Practice Day, Hockenheim, Germany, 22 July 2005

Red Bull Racing have confirmed Mark Webber and David Coulthard as their 2007 race line-up. The news, announced Monday, comes just days after Williams revealed they would be parting company with Webber at the end of this season.

“It’s fantastic to be joining Red Bull Racing,” said Webber. “It’s clear that the team is very hungry for long-term success, it has a very talented group of personnel and there seems to be a real sense of team spirit and unity. I believe I’m joining the team at exactly the right time for success in the future.

“After I left Jaguar Racing at the end of the 2004 season and discovered that Mr. Mateschitz was taking over the team, I said that I felt the team had been placed in very good hands and had an assured future. As a team, it seems to be very realistic and knows the challenge that lies ahead. I hope to bring good experience to the team and to assist it by being a fast and consistent driver and scoring as many points as possible.

“I hope that with Red Bull Racing I can have my best F1 season to date and believe that we can be very, very strong together. I’m looking forward to some great times with David and the rest of the Red Bull Racing team.”

Coulthard’s 2007 confirmation with the team was widely expected after another string of solid performances from the Scot this season. His new partnership with Webber will make for one of the most experienced line-ups on the Formula One grid next year.

“I’m delighted to continue with Red Bull Racing for a third season,” said Coulthard. “I can feel that the team is really beginning to gel as a group. I’m looking forward to raising the performance of the team and the car and to see Red Bull Racing become a regular points scorer, in with a good shout for achieving podiums and wins.”

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner was delighted with his new driver pairing: “I’m very pleased to be able to confirm our driver line up for next year. David has continued to lead the team well and demonstrate the form he showed during 2005. This season he achieved the team’s first podium in Monaco and has shown commitment, determination and motivation to deliver at the highest level in Formula One. It was therefore an easy decision from both sides to extend the relationship for 2007. He’s still one of the best drivers on the grid and we’re delighted to have him in the team.

“Looking to Mark, we chose him for a number of straightforward reasons. One, he obviously has undoubted speed and ability, and two, he appears to have the determination and motivation needed to succeed. We’re entering an exciting new phase in the short history of Red Bull Racing and Mark was an obvious candidate for us. He’s got a good track record in F1 and we’re delighted to have secured his services for next year. We believe that together he and David will form a very solid partnership, which will give us one of the strongest driver line-ups in the field.”

The announcement is bad news for Coulthard’s current team mate Christian Klien, whose Formula One future now looks uncertain. Klien was Webber’s team mate at Jaguar in 2004 and stayed on with the team when they subsequently became Red Bull Racing.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Christian Klien for all his hard efforts for the team over the last two seasons,” added Horner. “He will remain a Red Bull Racing driver until the end of the 2006 season, and we will continue to give him all the support that we can during that time.”

Monday’s announcement also ends any hopes Vitantonio Liuzzi and Scott Speed had of stepping up from Red Bull’s junior team, Toro Rosso, to partner Coulthard.