Mark Webber says he is heading to the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in much better shape that he did 12 months ago, as he targets a strong start to the Formula 1 campaign.
After signing off his preseason running at Barcelona in Spain on Saturday, Webber feels that he has the package and the winter behind him that he wanted to be able to launch a title bid if his car is up to it.
"I am looking to have a much better year this year than I did last year – which of course means a lot of winning and improving the start of the season, which is clearly possible," said Webber, whose only victory in 2011 came at the season finale in Brazil. "I feel better than I did this time last year, in terms of the preseason testing, and it is nice to have the feeling I did in Brazil.
"It is going to be a great battle again at the front, and this is what I am excited about – it is what I am training for, it is what I am preparing for and this is why I am looking forward to getting the first part of the championship underway."
Webber did concede, however, that it would not be too difficult to be in better shape than a year ago, because he had gone into 2011 feeling uncomfortable with the car and Pirelli's new rubber.
"I feel better than I did last year – which wouldn't be hard because I was pretty much in the s**t at the start of the year, so this year should be better," he said.
Webber reiterated that the update package Red Bull Racing has brought to Barcelona is not a dramatic improvement, but he feels happy with the way progress is going.
"There were just some some subtle changes," he said. "There are parts of the car that have improved a bit and other parts that we have to improve, so this is what the guys in the trucks will be going through. It wasn't like a big new package for me. It was just some minor aerodynamic improvements to be honest, so we have to analyze those.
"You cannot just throw these changes on and expect the get the most out of them straight away, so we have a lot to go through and the cars are extremely complex these days – there were some things we liked out of it and some things we need to look at."