As a none-too-happy Mark Webber emerged from his cockpit after a frustrating drive to fifth place at yesterday’s Australian Grand Prix, Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko has explained that the Australian had some sort of a chassis problem.

Was a chassis problem the root cause of Mark Webber woes at Albert Park? After finishing quickest in the opening practice session at Albert Park, the Australian was all but obliterated by the performance of team-mate Sebastian Vettel for the rest of the weekend, with the German out-qualifying him by over nine-tenths of a second and cruising to a comfortable victory, while Webber finished almost 40 seconds adrift, losing two placed to his second-row starting position as well.

“Mark had some problems with the chassis,” Marko told Germany’s RTL TV station after the 58-lap race.

“With him, neither the hard nor the soft tyres really worked. His tyre wear was also significantly greater than Sebastian’s,” he added.

Ironically, the situation mirrors a similar performance deficit suffered by Sebastian Vettel in the early half of last season, where a chassis imbalance on his RB6 challenger contributed to several performance discrepancies and wheel-related retirements.

[Original image via Sutton Images]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.