Analysis: BAR Conspicuous by Absence

Jenson Button cannot have enjoyed his afternoon off on Sunday after Formula One's governing body took the BAR out of Barcelona

Analysis: BAR Conspicuous by Absence

The British driver and his team mate Takuma Sato were conspicuous by their absence at a Spanish Grand Prix that his Honda-powered team had hoped to win before being banned for two races on Thursday.

BAR were punished for a breach of the rules with their car's weight and fuel tank at last month's San Marino Grand Prix.

Their trucks pulled out of the paddock on Friday, not to return until the European Grand Prix at the Nuerburgring in Germany on May 29 after the glamour highlight of the Championship in Monaco on May 22.

Button, who intended to watch the race on television, will have taken little comfort from seeing McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen winning ahead of Renault's Fernando Alonso.

"I never want to be a test driver. It's the most boring thing, sat around watching cars go around," he had told reporters on Friday.

"I'm sure I can find some way of looking after myself over the Monaco Grand Prix," he added. "But that will be the tough one, being there and not going out because it is such a spectacular event. It's one of my home grands prix.

"Waking up in my apartment and hearing the cars go round is going to be a bit weird."

Considerable Respect

While speculation was rife, with various theories about the BAR affair, most rivals preferred not to comment on an episode that did not cast Formula One in the best light.

"They are a very proficient racing team and we still have considerable respect for them. When they come back after their two-race ban, they are going to be very strong," said McLaren boss Ron Dennis.

Ferrari boss Jean Todt wondered whether Michael Schumacher might have won at Imola had Button not kept the seven-times Champion behind him for as long as he did.

"Maybe we lost the race in Imola because of that, because if you see how many laps Michael spent...but that is history," added the Frenchman.

Red Bull collected a point for eighth place with David Coulthard in Barcelona but team boss Christian Horner said it was not necessarily thanks to BAR's absence.

"It depends which BAR you are talking about," said Horner, asked whether they had benefited from the ban. "If it was a Melbourne BAR no. If it was the Imola one, then yes."

"But BAR are a very strong team and it's important for us to capitalise and take as many points as we can while they are not here," he added.

Button promised BAR would be back strongly.

"As soon as we get to Nuerburgring, they will realise that it's not down to what people think," he said. "We are a very good team and we have a lot of exceptional people working here and we will prove that when we get to Nuerburgring.

"I wouldn't say it's going to be revenge but it'll be great getting to Nuerburgring after the races off and show that we are very strong and that our pace is down to everyone involved in the team."

shares
comments
Raikkonen Cheers up his 'Bad Loser' Boss
Previous article

Raikkonen Cheers up his 'Bad Loser' Boss

Next article

McLaren Fear Alonso will be Hard to Beat

McLaren Fear Alonso will be Hard to Beat
The inconvenient truth about F1’s ‘American driver’ dream Plus

The inconvenient truth about F1’s ‘American driver’ dream

OPINION: The Formula 1 grid's wait for a new American driver looks set to continue into 2023 as the few remaining places up for grabs - most notably at McLaren - look set to go elsewhere. This is despite the Woking outfit giving tests to IndyCar aces recently, showing that the Stateside single-seater series still has some way to go to being seen as a viable feeder option for F1

How a bad car creates the ultimate engineering challenge Plus

How a bad car creates the ultimate engineering challenge

While creating a car that is woefully off the pace is a nightmare scenario for any team, it inadvertently generates the test any engineering department would relish: to turn it into a winner. As Mercedes takes on that challenge in Formula 1 this season, McLaren’s former head of vehicle engineering reveals how the team pulled of the feat in 2009 with Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1
Aug 15, 2022
The under-fire F1 driver fighting for his future Plus

The under-fire F1 driver fighting for his future

Personable, articulate 
and devoid of the usual
 racing driver airs and graces,
 Nicholas Latifi is the last Formula 1 driver you’d expect to receive death threats, but such was the toxic legacy of his part in last year’s explosive season finale. And now, as ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains, he faces a battle to keep his place on the F1 grid…

Formula 1
Aug 13, 2022
The strange tyre travails faced by F1’s past heroes Plus

The strange tyre travails faced by F1’s past heroes

Modern grand prix drivers like to think the tyres they work with are unusually difficult and temperamental. But, says  MAURICE HAMILTON, their predecessors faced many of the same challenges – and some even stranger…

Formula 1
Aug 12, 2022
The returning fan car revolution that could suit F1 Plus

The returning fan car revolution that could suit F1

Gordon Murray's Brabham BT46B 'fan car' was Formula 1 engineering at perhaps its most outlandish. Now fan technology has been successfully utilised on the McMurtry Speirling at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, could it be adopted by grand prix racing once again?

Formula 1
Aug 11, 2022
Hamilton's first experience of turning silver into gold Plus

Hamilton's first experience of turning silver into gold

The seven-time Formula 1 world champion has been lumbered with a duff car before the 2022 Mercedes. Back in 2009, McLaren’s alchemists transformed the disastrous MP4-24 into a winning car with Lewis Hamilton at the wheel. And now it’s happening again at his current team, but can the rate of progress be matched this year?

Formula 1
Aug 11, 2022
Why few could blame Leclerc for following the example of Hamilton’s exit bombshell Plus

Why few could blame Leclerc for following the example of Hamilton’s exit bombshell

OPINION: Ferrari's numerous strategy blunders, as well as some of his own mistakes, have cost Charles Leclerc dearly in the 2022 Formula 1 title battle in the first half of the season. Though he is locked into a deal with Ferrari, few could blame Leclerc if he ultimately wanted to look elsewhere - just as Lewis Hamilton did with McLaren 10 years prior

Formula 1
Aug 9, 2022
The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat Plus

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat

After being ditched by McLaren earlier in his F1 career Sergio Perez fought his way back into a seat with a leading team. BEN EDWARDS thinks the same could be happening to another member of the current grid

Formula 1
Aug 8, 2022