RED BULL'S MARK WEBBER has revealed he is set to again undergo surgery when the Formula One season goes on break following the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Webber, who has performed remarkably this season despite suffering from discomfort as a result of a broken leg and shoulder he suffered in November last year, had two screws removed from his leg ahead of the German event last weekend.
But the Australian will again have to go under the knife to remove the remaining screws in his leg, the last time the one-time GP winner will be operated on until the end of the season.
He told German newspaper Bild: ?"The titanium rod is coming out only after the season, and then the bump (on his shin) will disappear.?
While Webber convinced Red Bull powerbrokers he was fit enough to compete in round one at Albert Park, the Australian said his assessment was somewhat optimistic.
?I think I was kidding myself a bit. It is absolutely clear that the leg was a long way from healed and it was still broken. It was just the metal holding it in place, so it has come a long way since then,? he said.
Despite securing four podiums finishes and one race win this season, Webber hasn?t yet been granted a contract extension for next season, as teams await confirmation of negotiations between FOTA, CVC Capital Partners and the FIA.
Red Bull team boss Christian Horner told jamesallenonf1.com: ?Mark?s doing a brilliant job. He?s a great team player. We?ve got a very good balance in the team. We?ll get around to talking to him about his contract shortly but he?s a very valued member of the team.?
In other driver market news, Kimi Raikkonen?s agent has been moved to deny claims his client will quit Formula One at the end of the season and pursue a career in the World Rally Championship (WRC).
Raikkonen is poised to compete in the upcoming WRC round, Rally Finland, driving a Fiat Grand Punto, continuing his recent interest in rallying.
But Riki Kubaja said to the Iltalehi daily: ?The contract (with Ferrari) is valid and we will adhere to it.?
Kubaja?s claims were reinforced by Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali, who was again moved to deny rumours Fernando Alonso would be donning Scarlet overalls next season.