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Mark Webber downbeat as Formula 1 title bid ends

Mark Webber

Webber downbeat after season end

Red Bull's Mark Webber could not hide his disappointment after missing out on a maiden Formula 1 title at Sunday's season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Webber was second in the standings behind Ferrari's Fernando Alonso before the race but came eighth as team-mate Sebastian Vettel won to take the crown.

"We did what we could but in the end it wasn't enough," said the Australian.

"When you come so close and just miss out on the top it's a shame, but I tried my absolute hardest."

Webber arrived at the Yas Marina Circuit eight points adrift of then-leader Alonso and seven ahead of Vettel.

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The 34-year-old, who started from fourth on the grid, knew that if he won and the Spaniard finished outside of the top two, the title would be his.

But he struggled for pace early on and came into the pits at the end of lap 11 to switch from soft to hard tyres.

Webber emerged in 16th but got stuck behind Torro Rosso's Jaime Alguersuari and, although Alonso opted for a tyre change of his own on lap 15, the pair failed to fully recover as Vettel stormed to a fine victory.

The final standings had Vettel top on 256 points, four clear of Alonso in second and 14 above Webber in third.

"Early in the race we had to make a few calls to get out of the position we were in and it wasn't too bad until there," Webber told BBC Sport.

"Going for the harder tyre pretty early hurt Fernando because he had to cover me off. It was a bit of a team effort I suppose but in the end I didn't get the result I wanted."

This weekend didn't turn out and it's a shame, but I'll have a good time to reflect in the next few weeks and look at the highs and the lows. That's the way sport is sometimes

Mark Webber

Webber won four races this season to put himself in contention for the title.

But crashes at the European Grand Prix and Korean Grand Prix, allied to only one win from the final eight races, saw his challenge fade as Alonso and Vettel came through strongly.

Webber made it clear during the season that he felt marginalised at Red Bull, claiming it was "obvious" that the team were emotionally more behind Vettel than him.

But on Sunday he was gracious in defeat, praised Vettel and Red Bull - who also won the constructors' championship - and turned his attention to the 2011 season.

When asked if he would definitely be at Red Bull this time next year, he replied: "Yes."

Webber, whose victory at the Turkish Grand Prix made him the first Australian since Alan Jones in 1981 to head the standings, added: "There were a lot of positives this year.

"This weekend didn't turn out and it's a shame, but I'll have a good time to reflect in the next few weeks and look at the highs and the lows. That's the way sport is sometimes.

"There are quite a few emotions. I think two championships for the team is not a bad effort for us. I fully congratulate Seb on the world championship."



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Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

RaceLast updated: 15 Nov 2012 12:34 UK
Position Country Driver Race Time
1 germany S Vettel 1:39:36.837
2 great britain L Hamilton 1:39:46.999
3 great britain J Button 1:39:47.884
4 germany N Rosberg 1:40:07.584
5 poland R Kubica 1:40:15.863
6 russian federation V Petrov 1:40:20.357
7 spain F Alonso 1:40:20.634
8 australia M Webber 1:40:21.080
9 spain J Alguersuari 1:40:27.038
10 brazil F Massa 1:40:27.705


see also
Hamilton targets McLaren comeback
14 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Alonso defends strategy decision
14 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Vettel win seals maiden F1 title
14 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Abu Dhabi GP as it happened
14 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix photos
14 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Vettel storms to Abu Dhabi pole
13 Nov 10 |  Formula 1
Hamilton heads Abu Dhabi practice
12 Nov 10 |  Formula 1


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