Webber clarifies Lewis criticism
Friday, 05, October, 2007, 11:07
Mark Webber has dissociated himself from the stewards? investigation into Lewis Hamilton?s driving during the Japanese Grand Prix, making it clear that he did not call for disciplinary action to be taken against the McLaren driver.
In the pre-event press conference in Shanghai on Thursday, Webber was highly critical of Hamilton?s handling of the second safety car period at Fuji, claiming that the accident that eliminated him and Sebastian Vettel had been triggered in part by the Briton accelerating and braking in an erratic fashion.
?It definitely contributed to Sebastian hitting me up the back that we were confused at what the other car was doing because he wasn?t doing what you are supposed to do,? Webber said.
?I think he did a s*** job behind the safety car.
?He spoke in the drivers? briefing about how good a job he was going to do and then he did the job the opposite way ? so we know for next time, it's no problem.?
The stewards have been investigating whether Hamilton should bear some of the responsibility for the crash and it remains unclear whether the Briton, who can clinch the world championship in his rookie season on Sunday, will be punished.
After practice on Friday Webber pointed out that while he had criticised Hamilton he had not lodged a formal complaint.
?Away from today?s events, I would just like to make it clear that, although I criticised Hamilton?s driving in yesterday?s FIA press conference, at no time have I made any official complaint about anyone?s driving following Sunday?s Japanese Grand Prix,? he said.
On the circuit, Webber had an encouraging start to his Chinese Grand Prix weekend, making good progress over the course of the day and ending up sixth on the timesheet, 0.8s off the ultimate pace.
?That was a good Friday running today,? he said.
?We got through our schedule okay and the car was reliable.
?We?re going to run through a few things tonight to see if we can get a bit more consistency but, apart from that, it was a good P2.
?P1 wasn?t that great for us ? but P2 was much better and it?s something strong for us to work with tonight.?
Team-mate David Coulthard was eighth quickest and cautiously optimistic.
?We ran through our programme well today and balance-wise we?re looking okay,? said the Scot.
?We had a good tyre evaluation, so we?re not overly concerned by the choices we have to make for tomorrow.
?Our times were competitive, but, to be honest, irrespective of where we are on Fridays, if you look at Saturday?s qualifying times, it?s been quite similar throughout the year with McLaren, Ferrari, BMW and then Red Bull with Renault, Toyota and Williams.
?I think it will be similar tomorrow.?