Button believes he could have led the Malaysian Grand Prix

Jenson Button believes he would have been leading into the final laps of the Malaysian Grand Prix had his race not been ruined by a pitstop calamity

Button believes he could have led the Malaysian Grand Prix

The McLaren driver was running just ahead of the Red Bulls and Mercedes when he made his third and final stop on lap 35 at Sepang, only to lose nearly two minutes when he was released before a wheel was properly attached.

As the eventual top four would all make four pitstops in total, Button reckons having studied the Malaysia race times in the subsequent three-week break that he would have been back ahead leading into the closing stages.

Though Button doubts he could have held off all his pursuers, he is sure he could have caused some headaches for Sebastian Vettel, Mark Webber, Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg and disrupted Red Bull and Mercedes' team orders.

"I think if we didn't have our wheel issue in the pitstop, we would've been leading the race with about 10 laps to go," Button said.

"Everyone else would've had to overtake us. It would've been fun. I don't know where we would've finished, at worst fifth, at best probably third.

"We could've really mixed it up and changed the team orders."

Button said that form vindicated McLaren's decision to start 2013 with a radical car, even though it has led to a painful opening to the campaign.

"It was so easy for people to say after Melbourne that we should go to last year's car," he said.

"Even from my point of view, it was really difficult to not think like that, because for the last few races of last year we were quickest.

"But I think what we have done with the car was the right thing.

"It has hurt us a lot, and it might still do here and in Bahrain, but the idea was always to have a car that we could develop through the season.

"It surprised us that nobody else went down our route. We thought the smaller teams would maybe keep the same tub and maybe be competitive in the first races.

"We didn't expect that all teams apart from us would go in that direction. That's what's hurt us.

"But the championship is still completely open. There are still 17 races to go. If we can turn it around in a few races and be fighting at the front, that's very encouraging."


shares
comments
Toro Rosso addresses exhaust burning for Chinese Grand Prix
Previous article

Toro Rosso addresses exhaust burning for Chinese Grand Prix

Next article

Fernando Alonso laughs off Felipe Massa's qualifying edge

Fernando Alonso laughs off Felipe Massa's qualifying edge
How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine Plus

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine

OPINION: Ferrari won the British Grand Prix with Carlos Sainz, but it ultimately cost Charles Leclerc a chance to make a bigger dent in Max Verstappen's title lead by leaving the Monegasque out on old tyres towards the end. Like Monaco, indecision over strategy proved to be the Scuderia's biggest issue - and if the team doesn't reflect, the headache can only intensify

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost Plus

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost

Formula 1 has a newest race winner, in a grand prix the victor appeared to have lost twice, only to charge back to headline a sensational and dramatic British Grand Prix. From a massive start crash to a late sprint finish, here’s how five factors saw Carlos Sainz take his maiden grand prix win

Formula 1
Jul 4, 2022
Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga Plus

Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga

The appearance of a revised Aston Martin in Spain caused controversy but PAT SYMONDS explains why the FIA investigation found the Silverstone team had no case to answer

Formula 1
Jul 3, 2022
Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Plus

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jul 2, 2022
Why the future is bright for the British GP Plus

Why the future is bright for the British GP

It wasn’t so long ago the situation looked bleak at Silverstone with the future of the British Grand Prix under threat. But a transformation has seen it restored to one of the most important races on the Formula 1 calendar, with bigger and better to come

Formula 1
Jul 1, 2022
Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone? Plus

Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone?

For the first time in many years, none of the local racers starts among the favourites for the British Grand Prix. But George Russell, Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris could have reasons for optimism

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return

Max Verstappen is the world’s number one racing driver… and he’s determined to keep it that way. Speaking exclusively to GP Racing's OLEG KARPOV, the Red Bull driver explains why he’s relishing the 2022 championship battle with Charles Leclerc – and why he’s not worried about returning to Silverstone, the scene of the biggest accident of his career last year

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team Plus

Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team

On Tuesday, Red Bull laid out its plans to develop and build a new hypercar - the RB17 - penned by Adrian Newey. As the project itself sates Newey as a creative outlet, it also offers Red Bull's Formula 1 team a number of new and exciting avenues to pursue

Formula 1
Jun 29, 2022