Webber admits ‘niggles’ in brutal winter season

(GMM) Mark Webber has admitted that an unusually arduous winter testing period left Red Bull's race lineup with "physical niggles" ahead of the first grand prix of the 2008 season.

The Austrian owned squad appointed Swiss teenager Sebastien Buemi as its official test driver in January, but the team nonetheless opted to leave the pre-season's cockpit duties to racers Mark Webber and David Coulthard.

Despite their collective age of 67, Coulthard and Webber are, however, considered among the fittest on the formula one grid, and Webber told the Melbourne newspaper the Herald Sun that he "couldn't be physically better prepared" for his home race.

"Red Bull chose not to use any test drivers this year — David and I did all of the work ourselves," Webber, 31, said.

Coulthard, the oldest driver currently on the grid, recently sat out one of the last days of the test season with a neck twinge, and Webber reveals that he too felt the effects of the intense preparation of the new Adrian Newey-penned RB4.

"It's probably the most intense off-season, in terms of doing mileage, that I've ever had. David and I got through it in the end, but we had a few physical niggles towards the end because you are just doing so many miles," he said.

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