Button admits McLaren still “far away” from where they need to be
While Jenson Button has accepted that his McLaren team are still “far away” from where they should be, he has moved to praise the team’s continued strong rate of development ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix.
After three disappointing races without a top-10 finish, Button picked up his first points since the Malaysian Grand Prix with a solid drive to sixth in Monaco, which while he noted was far from an acceptable result for a team such as McLaren, did demonstrate the Woking-based outfit’s positive continued rate of development since the start of the season.
“It was a positive for the whole team to put some points back on the board at Monaco after a difficult few races,” said the 2009 champion.
“We’re obviously still far away from where we want to be, but it’s important that we maintain our aim of continuous development throughout the whole season.
“Although we’re still a long way from the leaders, we’ve matched the general rate of development since the start of the season, which is a positive.”
Button, who famously raced from last place to snatch a dramatic race win from Sebastian Vettel on the final lap of the 2011 Canadian Grand Prix, is excited ahead of this weekend’s race, which he expects could, like in 2011, be affected by rain.
“I really enjoy the Canadian Grand Prix – it’s one of those races where everything just feels right,” he added.
“It’s a place that simply produces great Formula 1.
“In Canada, the weather can always play a key role – the forecast currently looks good, but you never know when you pull back the curtains in the morning whether you’re going to be faced with blue skies, or grey clouds and pelting rain.
“We’ll probably get a bit of both next week.”
Button’s rookie team-mate Kevin Magnussen is similarly looking forward to what will be his first Canadian Grand Prix, a race that his father scored points at in 1998 in his last F1 start for the Stewart team.
“The Canadian Grand Prix is one of those races I’m really looking forward to: I’ve always watched it on TV, and it’s always looked like one of the very best, most enjoyable, and most dramatic events of the season,” said the McLaren driver.
“The track looks like a lot of fun; it’s got a good blend of corners, and it’s the kind of place where you want the car nicely hooked up and beneath you because, apart from the back straight, it’s pretty much always changing direction. So it’s a bit like Monaco in that respect, but a lot faster.”
The Dane, who was the victim of a botched passing move from Kimi Raikkonen late in the Monaco Grand Prix which dropped him to tenth, is simply hopeful of a trouble free weekend in Canada.
“It would be nice to have a straightforward weekend after a couple of disappointing technical problems.
“Things didn’t quite go my way in Spain or Monaco – through no fault of my own – so I just want to get my head down, work with my engineers and work on delivering a good result, with no mishaps,” added the Dane.
“I think it will actually be very interesting to see what we can achieve without encountering a problem that sets us back.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic
Dan Paddock is an FIA accredited freelance motorsport and Formula 1 journalist and the Grand Prix Editor of Richland F1. Dan joined the site in July 2013 as a Staff Writer, fresh off the back of completing a master’s degree in journalism. Following a promotion, Dan has since gone on to represent Richland F1 at four grands prix. Aside from Richland F1, Dan also writes for Rumble Strip News, as well as maintaining his own modest blog.