MARK WEBBER has dismissed suggestions Red Bull will romp to victory come the opening race of the season in Australia in just over a fortnight's time.
For the first time yesterday, in pre-season testing, a Red Bull car topped the timesheet as the first eight days had seen McLaren, Ferrari, Mercedes and Lotus out in front. Conditions at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya were far from ideal as early sessions were dominated by rain and cold temperatures.
Towards the end of the session Webber bolted on a set of soft Pirelli tyres to finish 1.7secs ahead of Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes.
Although impressive, the time was still 0.8s slower than the best of last week, but suggested there was plenty in the tank.
"We've seen some very quick lap times from other cars, so we've got work to do, and we're working as hard as we can because we know there are some very strong teams out there," Webber said.
"We obviously focus as much as we can on ourselves, but you want to understand what the others are doing and look at how you might compare.
Asked about the prospect of Red Bull turning up in Melbourne and blowing away the field, Webber said: "Of course not. That hasn't happened for a long time. Once the season gets going then you have a bit of a trend, but early in the season it's anyone's game."
Behind Webber, Hamilton (pictured) again clocked up the miles with a day-high of 113 laps, and although far adrift of the Australian, his time on the medium compound tyre did stand out.
Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne, was seven tenths of a second behind Hamilton, followed by Williams' Valtteri Bottas and Perez.