Horner: Contract talks with Webber will be ‘straightforward’

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has said that he expects contract negotiations with Mark Webber to be ‘straightforward’.

With the silly season set to begin in earnest, and amid speculation that Webber could be replaced in the senior Red Bull concern for 2012, Horner appeared to suggest that an extension for the Australian would be a formality.

“Mark has made it clear that he wants to drive next year, and conversations with Mark tend to be quite straightforward.”

Horner refuted the idea that Webber’s performances had not been up to scratch this season, acknowledging that he is not as comfortable on the Pirelli rubber as team mate Sebastian Vettel.

“Mark on points has had the best start to an F1 campaign to date,” he said. “He has obviously struggled with the Pirellis more than Seb, and he is working hard to get to grips with that.

“But he is still a fierce competitor and he is still pushing very, very hard – as we saw in Barcelona a few weeks ago where he achieved his first pole position.

“As far as the future is concerned we agree to take things one step at a time and at the appropriate time we will sit down and talk about the future. He has had these issues with the tyres that he is working hard to get on top of, but we are very happy with him in the team.”