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F1 NEWS 

Jenson Button: Unpredictable 2012 formbook boosts title hopes

Jenson Button McLaren 2012Jenson Button believes that the unpredictable formbook of 2012 means he still has a chance of winning the world championship.

The McLaren driver is currently 63 points adrift of points leader Fernando Alonso but, heading to a stage of the season where he has been so strong in the past, he says there is reason to keep his ambitions high.

"I really enjoy these races from now on," explained Button. "Hopefully we will have the same sort of result as last year; scoring lots of points and consistently on the podium.

"There was only one race [from here on 2011] where I wasn't on podium until the end of the year, so if you can do it this year in F1, then it is a massive haul of points compared to others.

"You look at the standings and I know I haven't had the best points so far, because I have 101 points this year, and last year I ended it with 270 points and I was miles behind the championship winner. So it is really spreading the points out between everyone at the moment.

"But that shows if you have a good few back-to-back races you have a great chance of really leapfrogging a lot of people and fighting for the championship. The last few races have not gone to plan but I have more points than anyone else.

"It is a very slim chance that we can fight for the championship but it is still a chance. And if there was any season there was a chance with that points gap then it is this year."

McLaren heads to the Italian GP buoyed by Button's victory in Belgium, which was the first time one outfit has won consecutive races this year.

Technical director Paddy Lowe says that provides encouragement about the competitiveness of the team's car, but admits gaining ground in the championship is a far more pressing concern.

"It is nice and particularly for circuits that were quite different with downforce levels," explained Lowe.

"I am happier about what that says about the underlying car performance in terms of the rest of the season and getting competitive, but actually it hasn't been fantastic for our championship points situation in giving us points in the right place, relative to the championship leader.

"Scoring good points on both sides of the garage is a very important objective, but the more important thing for me is a car performing well, and with which both drivers can win.

"We would like to have both drivers on the podium this weekend and, if one of them wins as well, that will be great."

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