Nov.25 (GMM) In his first interview since breaking his leg last weekend, Mark Webber insists the injury will not stop him taking to the grid for the first race of the 2009 season.
The Australian driver is currently laid up in a Hobart hospital, after colliding with a car during a mountain bike descent for his own outdoor adventure challenge event in Tasmania.
His right leg is badly broken in two places, and he is impatiently waiting to recover from surgery rather than travelling back to Europe for next month's Jerez test as previously planned.
"I'll back in plenty of time for the AGP (Australian grand prix) at the end of March. It'll be business as usual," he told the Melbourne newspaper Herald Sun.
The 32-year-old Red Bull driver will have to miss some testing, but following Jerez he insists he wasn't scheduled to drive until the 2009-specification R25 is ready to roll out in February.
"I was only testing for two days next month and then, because of the slash to winter testing, Sebastian (Vettel) and I weren't due in the new car until February 10," he said.
"Having a broken leg doesn't stop me visiting the RBR factory and being on top of what's happening with the new car. Fitness-wise, I'll be fine too, there's something like 83 days before the first test in 2009."
He said he will stay in Australia for a few weeks because doctors have advised him against a long-haul flight so soon after surgery.
"I haven't needed any further surgery or treatment so it's just a matter of waiting to be discharged," said Webber.
"It's a straightforward and clean enough break so I'm not expecting any complications or setbacks."
Webber's medical reports are now being sent to Red Bull's medical experts in Austria, who will oversee his rehabilitation plan.
"Once Red Bull have all the info, they'll be able to decide what is the best course of rehab and with whom," he confirmed.
He said he is "amazed" how big the news of his injury is back in Europe and around the world.
Webber revealed that he has received many messages of support, including emails and texts "from some of the other guys on the F1 grid".