Button: Attack shows Sao Paulo dangers

Jenson Button hopes his escape from an attempted armed robbery in Brazil on Saturday night helps bring home how dangerous Sao Paulo can be - so that people take more care to avoid similar trouble in the future

Button: Attack shows Sao Paulo dangers

Only swift action by trained police driver Daniel Toni ensured that Button and the people he was travelling with en route from the circuit to his hotel escaped unharmed when armed men approached their bullet proof Mercedes-Benz B-class car near the Interlagos circuit

With news emerging on Sunday morning that several Sauber engineers were robbed last night, Button hopes some lessons can be learned.

"It is a horrible thing to happen," he said. "I feel fine now. There is obviously a lot of attention because it is the first time it's a driver that has been held up, but hopefully it will show the dangers that are here and we will take more care.

"From what I hear, most of the drivers have got police escorts into the circuit, as well as a bulletproof car and a police driver. It is not a very comfortable feeling but we are here now, here to have a good race, and that is the most important thing."

Button spoke at length about exactly what happened in the incident.

"You hear about it happening over the years, but until you are actually involved you don't know how it feels," he said. "It is a pretty scary situation, because initially you don't believe it's happening. It's quite strange and also I don't think we were the only people who had it yesterday.

"The Sauber mechanics, from what I hear, got held up and actually had to stop and give away everything. They had a pretty horrible ordeal so I feel sorry for those guys.

"We rocked up at the traffic lights, about three rows back. Our driver, as always, stops early and doesn't pull up right behind the car in front. We looked to the right and saw a few guys gathering at the side of the road just at the entrance to a building. They were just stood there.

"It looked a bit suspect but we didn't think anything of it and then Richard [Goddard, Button's manager] noticed that one of them had a baton hanging down from his arm. Then I noticed that one guy was playing around with something in his trousers and it was a gun. As soon as I said that the driver looked across and when they saw him look they started running towards the car.

"He angled the car and floored it. It didn't look like there was a big enough space there, we got between six cars and rammed every single one to get past. We got through in the end and got away, but looking behind there were two guys with hand guns. One was quite a simple looking hand gun and one guy with something that looked like a machine gun."

shares
comments
Sutil, Liuzzi unhappy with each other
Previous article

Sutil, Liuzzi unhappy with each other

Next article

Alonso: Red Bull friction no advantage

Alonso: Red Bull friction no advantage
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?

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
How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay Plus

How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay

Winner of 13 grands prix including Monaco and survivor of a life-changing plane crash, David Coulthard could be forgiven for having eased into a quiet retirement – but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, in fact he’s busier than ever, running an award-winning media company and championing diversity in motor racing. Not bad for someone who, by his own admission, wasn’t quite the fastest driver of his generation…

Formula 1
Aug 7, 2022
Could F1 move to a future beyond carbonfibre? Plus

Could F1 move to a future beyond carbonfibre?

Formula 1 has ambitious goals for improving its carbon footprint, but could this include banishing its favoured composite material? PAT SYMONDS considers the alternatives to carbonfibre and what use, if any, those materials have in a Formula 1 setting

Formula 1
Aug 6, 2022
How Russell has proven he deserves to be Hamilton's Mercedes heir Plus

How Russell has proven he deserves to be Hamilton's Mercedes heir

He’s fast, he’s smart, and he’s already shown he’s not going to let Max Verstappen intimidate him. George Russell won’t say it, but LUKE SMITH says he’s ready to take the lead at Mercedes when Lewis Hamilton moves on to a quieter life. And – whisper it – Mercedes and Lewis are starting to think so too

Formula 1
Aug 5, 2022
The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin move Plus

The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin move

Fernando Alonso’s bombshell switch to Aston Martin sent shockwaves through Formula 1, not least at Alpine that finds itself tangled in a contract standoff with Oscar Piastri. Not shy of a bold career move and with a CV punctuated by them, there were numerous hints that trouble was brewing

Formula 1
Aug 4, 2022
The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships Plus

The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships

OPINION: Ferrari's Formula 1 title hopes look all but over after another strategic blunder in last week's Hungarian Grand Prix denied Charles Leclerc the chance to fight for victory, while handing it to chief rival Max Verstappen. The Scuderia now faces intense scrutiny over what it must now do to finally become a genuine factor in championship battles

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2022