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F1: Webber stays bullish for final run in

india Updated: Oct 25, 2010 15:30 IST

AFP
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Australian Mark Webber remained bullish about his chances of winning this year's Formula One drivers world championship on Monday despite losing his leadership after crashing out of Sunday's Korean Grand Prix.

The 34-year-old Red Bull driver spun his car during the early laps of a delayed and interrupted, but wildly dramatic, rain-hit race while running in second place and hit a kerb and a wall before colliding with German Nico Rosberg's Mercedes car.

The accident left him pointless and cost him top spot in the title race with two events remaining in Brazil and Abu Dhabi. Triumphant Spaniard Fernando Alonso of Ferrari took over as leader.

But Webber collected himself and remained defiant in his bid to become the third Australian after Jack Brabham and Alan Jones to lift the title.

"It's not easy, but I can still do it, absolutely," he said. "Positions are not really important at the moment -- the points are the important thing. They can change very quickly.

"This is my second non-finish of the year, but there are still two races to go and I will do my absolute best."

He conceded that his accident was all his own fault.

"Yes, it was totally my fault. I got a wheel on the kerb on the exit of Turn 12 and it was a very slow-motion moment, off the back of it.. Totally my mistake.. It just wasn't my car.

"It was a very long slide and so frustrating. I thought I had done enough, but in the end it wasn't enough. The wall obviously was close and did some damage and then I wrecked Nico's race as well.

While Webber bemoaned his fortune, Briton Lewis Hamilton of McLaren, the 2008 champion, was optimistic that he is still in the hunt thanks to finishing second, his first podium finish in four races.

"It is definitely back on and it is possible, but we need to keep pushing and we need some luck.

"We will keep pushing and as you saw anything can happen, we didn't expect two Red Bulls to go out, but that is how close this championship is. Fernando is quick but it is still open."

His McLaren team-mate and compatriot defending champion Jenson Button was downbeat after finishing 12th and admitted his title defence was virtually over. He is 42 points behind Alonso with two races remaining.

"Everyone else needs to have failures," he said. "That's the way it is. I don't know what happened, but there must have been something wrong because the car was undriveable.

"I won't be asked. If I can't mathematically win it I'd do whatever I needed to, to help the team. My championship, if the other guys don't have non-scores or issues, is pretty much over.

"But you don't win championships by sitting back and saying 'I can't win it any more'. You have to keep on fighting. Seeing what's happened to the Red Bulls here proves it can turn around easily.

"I'm not saying it's going to be easy, it's a very small chance but that's all I need to keep pushing."