Jenson Button has conceded, that while McLaren is still playing catch-up to the main players in Formula One at present, the Woking team is continually being forced into rolling the dice to score enough points to keep them within championship contention.
Speaking during the Thursday press conference in Bahrain, Button denied suggestions that high tyre degradation was ‘spoiling the show’. Rather, he was enjoying the unpredictability; given the phenomenon was giving McLaren breathing space whilst on the back foot.
“I can’t see what’s on screen… Maybe it’s a commentary problem!”, suggested a jovial Jenson. “I think the racing has been good fun. In the past we had tyres which lasted the whole race and we didn’t have any overtaking, so it’s very hard to get the correct balance, but there’s a lot of teams fighting at the front and from where I am it’s good to watch”.
Jenson was however confident in being able to make progress since China, with Bahrain’s hot weather possibly harmonizing with the direction McLaren were taking. He did further add that although his team were benefiting from two-stop strategies, taking such an approach was a complicated proposition and not always destined for success.
“I think we’ve been improving since the first race and I think these circuits suit the car a bit more in terms of set-up” explained Jenson “… But to finish fifth in the last race we had to beat some very quick cars. I think we had to try something different. P5 is not where we want to be, but I think we have to take a lot from last weekend. We had to try a two-stop strategy but it was very tricky to make it work… A lot went into the strategy to try and understand what we had to do with the tyres… A tricky weekend but a good result in the end.”
Although Sunday’s race is due to be a hot affair, wet weather on Thursday has been a surprise feature of the weekend. No doubt McLaren will be hoping for more in due course.
Image courtesy of Diana Rosica