Alexa

Webber shrugs off stair accident

Webber shrugs off stair accident

Mark Webber, regarded as one of the unluckier drivers in Formula One, almost fell victim to bizarre misfortune just moments after qualifying in pole position for the Malaysian Grand Prix.
Elated after his good performance Saturday _ he was a full 1.3 seconds quicker than his nearest rival _ Webber tried to slide down a staircase railing on his way back from the press room to his garage.
The Australian glided down a little faster than he anticipated, crashed into a wall and cut his right hand.
A Red Bull team spokeswoman said it was just a small cut that won't affect his race.
The 33-year-old Webber has been dogged by bad luck throughout his career and holds the record for the most races contested before his maiden win in Germany last year.
A cut on the hand will be only a minor inconvenience for a man who drove the early part of last season while recovering from a broken leg sustained when he was hit by a car while cycling in a charity adventure race in Australia.
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MERCEDES HARMONY: Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg has been pleasantly surprised by how easy it has been to work with seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher as his teammate.
Rosberg, like others in F1, had come to believe anecdotes of how ruthless Schumacher was toward his teammates, let alone rival competitors.
Rosberg, having switched from Williams to Mercedes this season, told the German tabloid Bild that he had imagined working with fellow German Schumacher would be "much more difficult."
"Some had warned me, but they apparently didn't know. Many said Michael would trick me and try to break me down mentally. But I'm experiencing exactly the opposite. Michael is really open and approachable. We are working really well together," the 24-year-old German driver said.
There were early indications of mind games when Schumacher demanded he be given the No. 3 on his car rather than No. 4, but Rosberg shrugged it off.
"Michael is superstitious, and I don't care. If I were to care about such trivialities, I would no longer be able to focus on my work."
Schumacher's comeback from three years in retirement had been underwhelming in the opening three races, being out-qualified and out-raced by Rosberg. Schumacher is eighth in the drivers' rankings with nine points, behind Rosberg who is fifth with 20 points.
However Rosberg was banking on the 41-year-old Schumacher finishing the season strongly after he gets back to grips with F1.
"I have the strongest colleague in all of Formula One ... Michael will get stronger," Rosberg said. "Of course he would have difficulties at first. He hasn't driven for three years, that's damn long."
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CAREFREE KIMI: Despite constant speculation linking him with a move back to Formula One, ex-world champion Kim Raikkonen says he has not thought about a return and won't for some time yet.
Raikkonen dropped out of F1 after 2009 when he was replaced at Ferrari for this season by Fernando Alonso. The Finn is now driving for the Citroen Junior team in the World Rally Championship.
That team's Red Bull sponsorship had seen him connected with a move to that company's F1 team in 2011, but the laid-back Raikkonen was paying no heed to the gossip.
"The way I see it is that for now I'm a rally driver, so I'm not thinking about the past or the future, even though people keep asking me," Raikkonen said on the WRC Web site. "At some point I need to take a decision about what I do next, but that won't be until the second half of the year at the earliest.
"Everything is possible, but I need to know how I will get on in rallying before I take any decisions. For now I have only just started and so far I am really enjoying myself."
Raikkonen is a two-time winner of the Malaysian Grand Prix, and provided one of the more memorable images of 2009 when he wandered the Sepang paddock eating an ice-cream while other drivers stood around the grid discussing the possibility of a restart following a red flag.
However, despite his memorable appearances in Malaysia, Raikkonen was not paying attention to this year's grand prix.
"Somebody actually pointed out to me earlier that it was the Malaysian Grand Prix this weekend; I hadn't even realized until it was mentioned."