Button not feeling home race pressure
|By Jonathan Noble||Thursday, June 18th 2009, 17:01 GMT|
Jenson Button reckons he will have no problem shaking off any pressure he has to win at Silverstone this weekend, thanks to his comfortable lead in the world championship standings.
The Brawn driver has the best chance of his career to triumph in the British Grand Prix and, although there are huge expectations on him from the media and fans, he thinks he will actually be able to keep it cool throughout the weekend.
That is because the 26-point advantage he has over team-mate Rubens Barrichello in the title standings mean it is impossible for anyone to overhaul him this weekend.
"Obviously I would like to do really well here, being my home grand prix and being the last year for Silverstone for a few years - I don't know how long, but hopefully for not too long," he said.
"And I am hoping that there is going to be a big crowd here. It is going to be a fantastic atmosphere.
"But the best thing for me to do is to think that whatever happens this weekend I come away from here still leading the championship by 16 points at worst. So, I should enjoy the weekend. I want to do the best job I can but I think I should enjoy the weekend. That is the most important thing."
Although Button's bigger picture approach in considering the world championship points to him shifting his focus onto the title rather than individual wins, he insists his approach to racing will not change.
"I still want to do the best job I can at every race and get as many points as I can at every race, and even to win every race," he said. "I am here to do that, and I have got the package to do that. But I am still not thinking long term too much yet. I think coming into this race, I am thinking that leaving here I am still leading the championship. That will keep me relaxed and let me enjoy the weekend."
When asked if his approach was a way of helping him deal with the extra pressure that comes at his home race, Button responded: "It is not the pressure that other people put on me, it is the pressure I put on myself. That is the thing. It doesn't change what people say or do outside of our team. It doesn't make a difference to my performance on this circuit.
"I am looking forward to it, and I am not going to get too much into thinking about the world championship. I am looking forward to the weekend, and hopefully we can put on a great show.
"It is the last race here for a while, and it will be great if we can have a good show here. It is just going to be amazing to see so many fans and most of them British here this weekend.
"It will hopefully be a great atmosphere, and that is something that maybe we have missed at a couple of races this year. So, I think for everyone involved this is going to be a good send off for Silverstone."
And although Button's Brawn team is one of five outfits that risks being left off the grid next year if it does not drop conditions attached to its entry by tomorrow night, Button is not wasting time worrying about events outside of his control.
"Whatever I say or do here it doesn't make any difference to what happens to my future. The team principals, the team owners are working very hard to find a solution, as is FOTA with the FIA. So I am happy with the work that they are doing.
"They are working so hard non-stop to try and find a solution and that is hopefully what they will achieve. I think it is unfair for me to talk about it here after all the work that they are doing – I don't know every single detail."
He added: "I can't see there not being any racing next year. I can't see that all of these teams that are racing in F1 this year; I can't see us not racing next year. So we are not thinking of that situation."