Mark Webber is refusing to let rumors of others replacing him at Red Bull put a damper on his start to the new season.
At 35 years of age and having fallen well behind team-mate Sebastian Vettel last season, questions are being asked about Webber's F1 career and whether it will continue beyond this year's Championship.
And although he has never publicly put down a timeframe for when he will retire, Australia's The Sunday Age is reporting that Webber is 'not contemplating retirement' at the end of this season.
However, that decision may be out of his hands after Red Bull's junior team Toro Rosso signed youngsters Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniel Ricciardo.
The duo have both been tipped within the Red Bull camp to possible replacements for Webber when the time comes.
The Aussie, though, is not letting the various rumors get to him.
"Not at all, you know, I've been through enough on and off the track to know that nothing is forever," he told the newspaper.
"(According to the media) I was supposed to be replaced by Kimi (Raikkonen) four years ago."
As for whether Ricciardo's signing, meaning there are two Australians on this year's grid, will pave the way for others, Webber reckons it will create more interest in the sport but that doesn't mean doors will easily open.
"I think what could and will happen is that when you have Australians winning and if Daniel goes on to have a good career, which I have no doubt that he will, it stimulates more people to have a crack at it but it won't be made any easier in many ways. I still think you'll have to be trying very hard." Planet F1
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