Mark Webber believes his strategy gives him an excellent opportunity to win the Indian Grand Prix, but admits it is very hard to predict whose tire tactics will pay off.
On a weekend when the softer tire is only lasting a few laps while the medium option shows great longevity, Webber is the highest-placed starter on the more durable Pirellis. His pole-sitting Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel and the two Mercedes ahead all qualified on softs. Webber is four places ahead of next-highest medium tire starter Fernando Alonso.
Asked if he felt that gave him a shot at winning the race, Webber replied: "Yeah. It needs everything to go right. You have a chance to be in a good position at the end. But, you cannot really say how the race is going to unfold in terms of tactics. And how we saw [Romain] Grosjean in the middle of Suzuka, where did that come from? It only takes one guy to stop you winning.
"You don't know how clean a run you will have you come out of the pits, so that is a big factor in it. You would think that the guy on the harder tire should have a cleaner first 20 laps in the race, but if he has a clean run back through then the [driver on the] option is still pretty good."
Webber admitted that the laptime deficit to Vettel was not all due to tire choice.
"I would probably be a tenth and a half off Seb, so it was still a pretty good lap," he said. "To be eight or nine tenths clear of some others guys on the prime was good, as I felt we weren't as competitive on the prime, to be honest."