Mar.8 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Mark Webber is yet to secure his place at Red Bull for the 2013 season.
Team boss Christian Horner said the Australian has a “spring in his step” after a strong winter following Sebastian Vettel’s dominance last year.
But as for the future, he said that will only be discussed “in the summer”.
“We’ve extended his contract on a year by year basis, I think that’s something that Mark and the team agreed was the right way forward,” Horner told Sky Sports.
“His motivation is high at the moment, he’s still delivering and undoubtedly will sit down later in the summer to discuss the future.”
The biggest threats to 35-year-old Webber’s place are rookie team Toro Rosso’s new signings, Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne.
Horner admitted the young duo is “being groomed for the future”.
But the real tension for Webber will be in the Red Bull garage, as another trouncing by Vettel could signal the end of his tenure.
“(Vettel is) probably one of the best, if not the best driver on the grid at the moment and that’s what Mark Webber’s got to come up against, unfortunately,” 1980 world champion Alan Jones told News Limited newspapers.
“This is why I think Mark’s really got to come out of the blocks flying, he’s got to come out firing.”