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Bypass V8s if you want F1, says Webber - Printable Version

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Bypass V8s if you want F1, says Webber - Sathish - 03-10-2009

Mark Webber says other Australians could be successful in Formula One but would have to avoid the "easier option" of V8 Supercars.

The Red Bull star said drivers who try to make it in single seater racing do not get the attention in Australia because of the overwhelming focus on V8s.

He has urged young racers who want to break into the premier international series to continue working hard, even if the goal appears remote.

And he said youngsters should be steered towards options other than sedan cars.

"They need to be shown that their future doesn't necessarily lie in V8 touring cars," Webber told F1 Racing.

"If they want the easier option, then touring cars is an obvious choice but if they really want to make it in single-seater racing, it's imperative they get themselves over to Europe.

"Obviously money is a huge issue as it's always been but if you're hungry enough you'll keep trying and believing you can make it happen.

"There are one or two good young Aussies racing in the junior categories in Europe - Daniel Ricciardo springs to mind - carrying the flag for the country but they don't get the recognition back home because they're overshadowed by the domestic V8 scene which is a real shame for them."

Ricciardo, a 19-year-old West Australians, is Australia's likely successor to Webber in F1.

He competed successfully in Europe last year, winning Formula Renault's West European Championship, and just missed out on another, the Eurocup.

This year he enters the British Formula Three Championship with Carlin Motorsport, which last year had the top three drivers in the series.

More Formula One drivers have come through the British F3 series than any other.

Ricciardo is in the select junior driver program of Red Bull.

Supercar star Craig Lowndes made an abortive attempt at single-seater racing in 1997 when he joined RSM Marko in F3000 as a teammate for Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya who would go on to win several F1 grands prix.

Lowndes finished 19th in the series while Montoya won three races in his rookie year and almost captured the championship.