Button Approved Barrichello Move to BAR

Jenson Button played a key role in hand-picking Rubens Barrichello to drive for BAR next season

Button Approved Barrichello Move to BAR

With Barrichello's long-rumoured switch from Ferrari to BAR having been confirmed on Tuesday, BAR team boss Nick Fry has told this week's Autosport that Button was consulted about his possible teammates for 2006 - and backed a swoop for Barrichello.

"We wanted Jenson to be entirely comfortable with whoever his teammate might be for 2006, if he were to remain with us," revealed Fry. "We presented Jenson with a list of drivers who might be available and Rubens got his full approval.

"We were able to get a very clear idea from Jenson what he thought of other drivers - their driving styles and so on. As far as Rubens was concerned, Jenson was very positive."

Button's backing of Barrichello comes despite continued uncertainty about where his own F1 future lies. It is looking likely that the matter will now have to be resolved by Formula One's Contracts Recognition Board.

Should BAR lose their battle for Button, then speculation is continuing to link Nick Heidfeld with the second seat at the team - as Autosport-Atlas predicted earlier this year.

But Fry has said that rumours suggesting Heidfeld has already signed an option with the team are wide of the mark.

"There have been some discussions with Nick Heidfeld but also with a number of drivers," he said. "Yes, conversations have taken place but there's nothing contractual in place, contrary to some speculation."

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