Mark Webber came oh-so-close to winning the World Championship in 2012, yet was blown to shreds last year by his team mate. He never looked anywhere near Vettel, and his only win came when Vettel had a gearbox problem.
|Webber brilliantly won in Monaco, 2010|
|Webber kept losing places at the start|
It's not all bad for Webber. His overtaking in 2011 was brilliant, with three nominations in my overtake of the year poll, including that breathtaking pass on Fernando Alonso up Eau Rouge. Not only this, but he drove superbly in China, starting 18th but finishing on the podium in 3rd place with a last lap overtake on Jenson Button. In Webber's defence, he suffered from some controversial decisions within the team in 2011, most notably in Britain (when he was told not to overtake Vettel for 2nd despite being faster) and Korea (where his strategy was changed.) That's not an excuse though and he needs to improve his all round game for the new season.
If Webber's to catch Vettel in 2012, he needs to start out-qualifying him more regularly, and improve the starts. His defending and overtaking is good, so he just simply needs to get ahead of Vettel more. Webber is 12/1 for the championship, while Vettel is odds on, so that proves that people aren't expecting much from him. And, for the reasons I stated on Thursday, Vettel's going to take a hell of a lot of beating. However, I'd really like to see Webber do well this season, because I fear it may be his last in the sport.
Over the next few weeks I will be looking at the six world champions on the grid, as well as three other drivers in top teams, in articles like this, as we prepare for the start of the season.