Mark Webber insists he holds no regrets concerning his Formula 1 departure and is “glad” to be out of the driving seat ahead of this weekend’s Rolex Australian Grand Prix.
The former Red Bull Racing star is a spectator at the event for the first time in 12 years, following his retirement from F1 last season and subsequent move into sportscars with Porsche.
Webber, who will take up commentary duties with host F1 broadcaster Network Ten this weekend, says he is enjoying being in and amongst the throng of the Albert Park event and reiterated he isn’t missing the thrill of racing in motorsport’s top tier.
“As a neutral I’m looking forward to it and I certainly don’t miss being behind the wheel,” he told assembled media at the Albert Park circuit.
“I have been on the treadmill so I have got all of my competitive juices out. I’ve had my time. I had a long career and it is time now for the other guys.
“Daniel Ricicardo is now in the seat and he can enjoy a long career now and I’m looking forward to seeing how he goes.”
While Webber is adamant he is happy to put his F1 days behind him, distinguished pundit and ex-grand prix racer Martin Brundle believes the 37-year-old will be hurting when Sunday’s race begins.
Brundle left F1 at the end of 1996 after career spanning 12 years and 165 races.
“I took a lot of pain when I saw the F1 cars head off for the first time when I left the sport,” Brundle told Speedcafe.com.
“Mark was so ready to leave and he had filled his boots with F1.
“He was ready to move on and I’ve seen him a couple of times over the winter and he’s been very happy.
“I don’t see him having any regrets about leaving F1 and heading to sportscars but when the cars form up on the grid at Melbourne that hurts a bit.
“I felt left behind back in 1997 and I will be surprised if Mark doesn’t feel a little bit the same way.”
VIDEO: Webber speaks ahead of the Grand Prix