Mark Webber has given an amusingly frank assessment of F1 rookies Nelson Piquet Jnr and Kazuki Nakajima. Asked how well his Red Bull team would fare compared to Renault and Williams he replied:
We have two drivers. Williams and Renault have only one. We must extract the full potential from the current car as quickly as possible.
It’s fair to say he’s probably not talking about Nico Rosberg and Fernando Alonso.
He may be proved right but I think it’s too early to judge either of them – particularly Piquet, who’s bound to be race-rusty after a year of testing.
And we must keep in mind that after Lewis Hamilton’s impressive debut last year expectations of what a rookie can achieve in Formula 1 have been raised.
Red Bull have four points in the constructors’ championships from Webber’s two seventh places. Williams have 10 and Renault eight.
Which makes me wonder is Webber really talking about Piquet and Nakajima – or are his comments an indirect way of putting pressure on his own team mate, David Coulthard? After all, Coulthard has scored as many points as Piquet – zero – and been involved in two collisions more fitting of rookie than a driver with 231 Grand Prix starts to his name.