Guest Author - Christine Blachford
Webber has been keeping us updated with his progress over the last few months, as he attempts to recover from the broken leg he sustained in November. After colliding with an SUV in a head-on collision on his bicycle, Webber has been in recovery training to try and get back in the car as soon as possible.
His aim was to return on the 11th February, and he managed to do so. During the four day test in Jerez, Webber climbed back into the cockpit for the first time and successfully completed his aims. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull's other driver, was there in case it got too much for Webber, and they had to swap, but he wasn't needed. I imagine it was quite a frustrating day for the German, although he has had plenty of time behind the wheel already, and I'm sure he was glad to see his team mate make a confident return.
Webber completed 83 laps, which is more than race distance, and said he found it much easier than he had expected. He said he had approached the test optimistically because he had a good idea of what he could achieve, even though Formula 1 cars can be very tricky to handle.
Thankfully, the test went well, despite some setbacks during his progress. Webber got some practice in as soon as his leg was strong enough by having a go in a kart. Apparently the vibrations were really strong and set him back a few days. Then on the Thursday before the test, he had surgery on the leg to remove a metal bolt. At the time, Webber said it wasn't unexpected surgery, and was completely normal, but of course, the timing wasn't exactly great.
Nevertheless, it all went according to plan, and Webber admitted he was very relieved to have been able to pull it off okay. He wanted to prove something to himself, to the team, and to all us fans who have been wondering whether he would make it in time. Having succeeded so well at the test, Webber is no fully confident that he will be fit in time for the first race at the end of March. However, he will hand over the car to teammate Sebastian Vettel for the rest of the test in Jerez.