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Road to Formula 1 Webber's career began in karting, the tough 'kindergarten' of motorsport, at the age of 14.
1991-93
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Karting (various wins at state level)

 
1994
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Debut in Australian Formula Ford Championship

 
1995
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3rd Formula Ford Festival, Brands Hatch, England

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4th Australian Formula Ford Championship

 
1996
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Winner, Formula Ford Festival, Brands Hatch, England

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2nd British Formula Ford Championship

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3rd Formula Ford European Cup works Van Diemen team

 
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After a successful career in this category, he moved into Formula Ford in 1994, and was placed 14th in his debut year. His next Australian Formula Ford season, 1995, saw Webber score several victories including a memorable win in the Formula Ford support race at the final Adelaide Grand Prix and second place at the Surfers Paradise Indycar Grand Prix meeting. Most importantly though, Webber placed third in the 1995 Duckhams Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch on his international racing debut.

The young Australian was then snapped up by the world's leading Formula Ford manufacturer, Van Diemen, to race in the 1996 British Formula Ford Championship - by far the most prestigious junior category series.

Prior to leaving Australia for Europe, Webber won the Formula Holden support race at the inaugural Melbourne Grand Prix. His winning ways were to continue overseas.

In his first year of European racing Mark created a stunning impression. He finished second in the British Formula Ford Championship after scoring four wins, and capped off a strong finish to the season by becoming the 25th winner of Formula Ford's most prestigious event, the Duckhams Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, England. This annual event attracts young drivers from all over the world for a crack at the unofficial Formula Ford world championship. Previous winners of the event include past and present Formula One stars Roberto Moreno, Johnny Herbert, Eddie Irvine, Jan Magnussen and Jenson Button.

Webber's win at the Formula Ford Festival was a personal high - he told Motorsport News editor, David Hassall. "It's the biggest thing to win at this level and to have a couple of former winners, Jan Magnussen and Eddie Irvine, in the crowd has helped to make this a very memorable day for me."Webber also scored a dramatic debut win at Spa, Belgium - one of the world's most challenging and demanding tracks - in the second round of the Euro Cup. Despite only contesting two of the three round series, he finished third overall

1997
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4th British Formula 3 Championship (five podiums)

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3rd Formula 3 Marlboro Masters, Zanvoort, The Netherlands

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4th Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix

 
1998
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2nd FIA GT Series (five race wins) AMG Mercedes sportscar team

 
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Two days after his Festival victory, Mark completed a successful test with the Alan Docking Formula 3 racing team on the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit. After impressing Docking, a fellow Australian, Mark was asked to spearhead the top British-based team for the 1997 season. He graduated to Formula 3, a vital career move on the way to Formula One. With continuing support from Yellow Pages, Mark won his fourth ever Formula 3 race at Brands Hatch - the scene of his Festival victory, but this time winning on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit. From pole position he led the race from start to finish and set a new lap record. He was to ultimately finish the championship fourth overall with a string of podium finishes, including a highly memorable second place at the F3 support race at the British Formula One Grand Prix meeting. He also finished third in the annual Marlboro Masters at Zandvoort, The Netherlands and fourth in the category's other blue ribbon event, the Macau F3 Grand Prix - both times on his track debut.

His Formula 3 successes impressed Mercedes and the AMG sports car team and after completing a successful test with the team at Austria's A1 -Ring, Webber signed with AMG to compete in the 1998 FIA GT Championship.

That year Mark teamed with reigning GT world champion, Bernd Schneider, in the #1 AMG Mercedes CLK GTR (and later the CLK LM) and the German/Australian combination raced to five victories, finishing runner-up to their team-mates, Klaus Ludwig and then new Formula One recruit, Ricardo Zonta, in the championship. In fact, Mark and Bernd lost the championship by just eight seconds after a thrilling final round at Laguna Seca in California, which saw Mark at his very best as he hunted down and slashed Ricardo's lead in the final half hour.

1999
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AMG Mercedes sportscar team

 
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Remaining with AMG Mercedes sports car team, Mark had every reason to start the 1999 season with high hopes after being promoted to number one driver status within the team and given his own car. However, the team's race programme for the year was severely reduced before the season even got under way when the FIA GT Championship was cancelled through lack of entries, leaving Mercedes to concentrate their efforts into a five race programme, including the 24 Hours Le Mans and selected rounds of the American Le Mans series. Webber clocked up thousands of kilometres in pre-season testing as the team travelled extensively to participate in 24-hour simulation tests in preparation for Le Mans. However, the programme collapsed in the most spectacular fashion when Webber's car became airborne during Thursday's practice session at Le Mans and out of view of the TV cameras and public, somersaulted several times, although he was fortunate to escape without serious injury.

A new car was built in time for Saturday's race but on Mark's first lap out of the pits in the morning warm-up session, exactly the same thing happened again - but this time in full view of the cameras, drivers and spectators. Mark again escaped uninjured while the team called its remaining cars into the pits to fit extra downforce as an added precaution. Ignoring advice to withdraw from the race, Mercedes decided to continue with its two remaining cars but five hours into the race, Webber's team-mate, Peter Dumbreck, experienced an identical flip, landing the other side of the armco barriers, and Mercedes withdrew its remaining car instantly. The rest of the year's programme was shelved and the cars were never raced again.

In the wake of the Le Mans debacle, Mark decided that this was to be the end of his sports car career and over the next few months he pushed hard for a return to single-seater racing, eventually parting company with AMG and Mercedes. Webber was introduced to fellow Australian Paul Stoddart by Eddie Jordan. Stoddart was a sponsor of Jordan Grand Prix in 1999 but had also acquired the Edenbridge Formula 3000 team which he had renamed European Formula Racing. Mark tested for the team on a number of occasions towards the end of the '99 season and topped the times at an official F3000 test session at Barcelona before signing for the team to compete in the 2000 FIA International F300 Championship.

2000
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3rd FIA International Formula 3000 Championship (three podiums) Eurobet Arrows F3000 team

 
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A deal between Stoddart and Arrows F1 team boss Tom Walkinshaw saw EFR become the Arrows Formula 3000 junior team for the 2000 season, and Mark nominated as the F1 team's test driver.

Despite EFR and Webber both lacking experience in the junior F1 category, Mark quickly established himself at the front of the F3000 field and after taking third place in the opening round at Imola and winning round two at Silverstone, held an unexpected early lead in the championship. The team however, struggled on tracks they hadn't tested on and eventually lost their early advantage. Mark however, went on to pick up sufficient points, including a podium finish at Hockenheim, to secure third place in the drivers championship and highest placed rookie, while his sole efforts took EFR to fifth place in the team championship.

Webber's relationship with Arrows was never fulfilled and after declining a contract with the team in July '00, Mark was approached by Benetton who arranged a three day evaluation test at Estoril, Portugal. Webber put in a stunning performance, topping the times at the end of the three day test ahead of F1 stars, Giancarlo Fisichella and Ralf Schumacher.

2001
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Benetton Renault Sport Formula 1 test driver

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2nd FIA International Formula 3000 Championship (four podiums) Super Nova Racing

 
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Benetton moved quickly to secure the young Australian's driving services and he was named at the Benetton Renault's official test and reserve driver for 2001. As part of the same deal, Mark also raced for championship-winning F3000 team, Supernova, in the 2001 FIA International Formula 3000 Championship. During the 2001 season, Mark scored three F3000 wins at Imola, Monaco and Magny Cours and took second place in the championship.

As the season wore on, Mark found himself spending more and more time testing for Benetton Renault, often at the expense of his F3000 commitments. However, with a move up to Formula One in 2002 firmly set in his mind, Mark gave maximum effort to his F1 testing duties and over the winter months his management successfully negotiated a fulltime F1 drive with the KL Minardi Asiatech team for 2002, a team owned by none other than Paul Stoddart, Mark's team boss in 2000 who had also taken control of the Minardi F1 team at the end of 2000.

2002
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Formula One debut season KL Minardi Asiatech team

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5th on Grand Prix debut, Australian Grand Prix

 
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Webber's debut Formula One season in 2002 proved an outstanding one and the Australian was nominated F1's Rookie of the Year several times over. Racing for the perennial underdogs, Minardi, Webber took the team to new heights during the year, and on his GP debut on home soil at Albert Park in Melbourne, finished in a fairytale fifth place, much to the delight of the partisan crowd who cheered his every lap and his team boss and fellow countryman, Paul Stoddart. It was the first time Minardi had scored championship points since 1999 and an important shot in the arm for the under-funded Anglo-Italian team. Meanwhile, Webber earned himself a spot in the record books by becoming only the 51st driver in the history of the sport to score points on his GP debut and only the fourth Australian driver to ever score world championship points.

Although he wasn't to score any further championship points in 2002, Webber picked up another two top 10 positions (eighth at Magny Cours and 10th at Suzuka), as well as four 11th places (Interlagos, Imola, Monte Carlo and Montreal), one 12th (A1-Ring), one 15th (Nurburgring) and one 16th (Hungaroring), and was one of the most consistent race finishers. He finished 15th in the FIA Formula One World Drivers' Championship.

His impressive performance led to him testing for the Jaguar Racing team in the summer of 2002 and two months later he signed to race for the Milton Keynes-based team in 2003. Webber was the recipient of a number of major awards, including the Autosport and F1 Racing magazine Rookie of the Year awards and also picked up a 'Bernie' Award for F1 Newcomer of the Year.

2002
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Jaguar Racing driver, finished 10th in the Driver's Championship

 
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Mark achieved 10th place in the FIA F1 world drivers' championship (thus fulfilling his personal goal for the '03 season) and brought home 18 of the 19 points won by Jaguar Racing. He excelled at the new one-lap qualifying format, the highlights being the Brazilian and Hungarian Grands Prix where he qualified the R4 in third place on the grid - the highest grid position achieved by Jaguar Racing to date.

Mark also had a strong finishing record, finishing in the top ten in eight of the 16 races, three of those being in 6th place and four in 7th position.

2004
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13th in the FIA World Formula One Drivers' Championship

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Signed with the BMW WilliamsF1 Team for 2005

 
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Mark remained with Jaguar Racing for the 2004 season and although points were much harder to come by than the previous year, there were certainly some memorable moments - most notably when Mark planted the R5 on the front row of the grid for the 2004 Malaysian Grand Prix alongside pole sitter, Michael Schumacher, and his qualifying performance in tricky conditions for the Japanese Grand Prix which earned him third place on the grid. However, despite strong qualifying performances, his best race result was sixth place in the German Grand Prix. One 7th and a couple of 8th places helped him to 13th place overall in the FIA World Drivers Championship with a total of seven points.

However, although his season was short on points, Mark's consistent and gutsy performances at the wheel of both the Jaguar and Minardi since making his F1 debut in 2002, had clearly won the admiration of the BMW WilliamsF1 team and in July, Webber signed a multi-year agreement with the Grove, Oxfordshire-based team and with it, the opportunity to show his potential with a proven winning team.

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