FIA WORLD ENDURANCE CHAMPIONSHIP
t’s the obvious question really. Does
winning the 2015 FIA World Endurance
Championship make up for the failure to
clinch the Formula 1 title back in 2010?
Mark Webber doesn’t really want to go
there, but he is willing to say his triumph
with Porsche is “right up there” with his
achievements in grand prix racing.
“It’s a first world championship for me
and it feels beautiful,” says the Australian,
who sealed the WEC drivers’ title with
Timo Bernhard and Brendon Hartley
courtesy of finishing a delayed fifth in the
Bahrain finale, Nov. 21. “It’s not an easy
thing to achieve, so to win it is very special.
“I’m very happy to have this moment
with an incredible brand that’s raised the
bar so high in 18 months [since its return
to top-flight, LMP1 sports car racing in
2014] against some really organized and
competitive teams,” he adds. “I think
we’ve brought a different mentality and a
bit of F1, a whole new style. Audi has
constantly been on the back foot because
we’ve been so strong in all areas.”
Winning the title with Porsche provides
added resonance for Webber. He’s a massive
fan of the marque and has a fleet of its road
cars – including a 918 Spyder plug-in hybrid
supercar – in the garage at his UK home.
“To win it wearing a Porsche suit is
definitely more special for me,” he says,
pointing out that he and his teammates in
the No. 17 919 Hybrid are Porsche’s first
world champions since Derek Bell took
the title in a factory 962C back in 1986.
And on the question of his 2010 F1
title near-miss in Abu Dhabi?
“I’m not thinking about 2010 at the
moment,” he says, flatly. “It’s just a massive
Porsche dominated its
second season in the WEC’s
LMP1 class, delivering a first
world championship to Mark
Webber in the process.
WORDS Gary Watkins
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