Button, Perez settle their differences over Bahrain GP battle

Jenson Button and Sergio Perez have settled their differences over their Bahrain Grand Prix duel in a behind closed doors meeting with senior team management, AUTOSPORT has learned

Button, Perez settle their differences over Bahrain GP battle

After the pair clashed on track in an aggressive fight for position at Sakhir, Button and Perez spoke out against each other immediately after the race.

With the matter having spilt over in to the public domain - both through team radio broadcast on television and post-race television interviews - McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh and sporting director Sam Michael elected to ensure that the matter did not continue into the break before the Spanish GP.

In an exclusive interview with AUTOSPORT on Monday, Michael revealed that the four of them got together late on Sunday in Bahrain to vent their true feelings so the controversy did not cloud the rest of the campaign.

Q&A: McLaren's Sam Michael on the Button and Perez rivalry

"Both Jenson and Checo had an opportunity to express their views to us, and then we gave them the team's position," said Michael.

"That position is quite simple: McLaren allows both its drivers to race hard and fair, and in return its drivers must respect that trust and mustn't let the team down.

"It was a good discussion, and both Jenson and Checo were keen not only to talk the issues through but also to part on good terms."

Michael has revealed that in the meeting both Button and Perez admitted that they could have handled the race situation better, while the team also reckoned it played a part in not helping the matter.

"Checo was understandably pleased with his performance, but he appreciates that at times it was too close to the mark," said Michael.

"Likewise, Jenson acknowledges that during the race he reacted harshly to some of the occurrences.

"Together we've reviewed all the detail - the precise content of which is not appropriate for external discussion.

"However, the team also has to accept that, in not imposing a team order on either of our drivers, despite our seeing on our pit wall monitors an increasingly intense battle unfolding between them, we weren't adopting what you could term a 'caution-optimised' strategy.

"But that's the way McLaren goes motor racing - always has, always will.

"Some of the most exciting moments of modern-era Grand Prix racing were provided by McLaren team-mates Ayrton [Senna] and Alain [Prost] fighting each other on track in the late 1980s, and Ron [Dennis] didn't impose team orders on them in those days either.

"Jenson and Lewis [Hamilton] have had their fair share of on-track battles over the past three years too - and, although they caused some nail-biting moments on the pit wall, we didn't intervene. And that was right."

shares
comments
Lewis Hamilton says cooler European venues will help Mercedes
Previous article

Lewis Hamilton says cooler European venues will help Mercedes

Next article

Q&A: Sam Michael on the rivalry between Button and Perez

Q&A: Sam Michael on the rivalry between Button and Perez
The “solemn promise” that cost quiet hero Brooks an F1 title Plus

The “solemn promise” that cost quiet hero Brooks an F1 title

After two terrifying crashes, one of the best British racers of the 1950s retired before his career peaked. But that’s why GP Racing’s MAURICE HAMILTON was able to speak to Tony Brooks in 2014. Like his friend Stirling Moss, Brooks was regarded as one of the best drivers never to have won the world championship. Here, as our tribute to Brooks who died last month, is that interview in full

Formula 1
Jun 27, 2022
Inside the Faenza facility where AlphaTauri’s F1 pragmatic vision is realised Plus

Inside the Faenza facility where AlphaTauri’s F1 pragmatic vision is realised

AlphaTauri’s mission in F1 is to sell clothes and train young drivers rather than win the championship – but you still need a cutting-edge factory to do that. Team boss Franz Tost takes GP Racing’s OLEG KARPOV on a guided tour of a facility that’s continuing to grow

Formula 1
Jun 26, 2022
Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons Plus

Connecting two of Ferrari's favourite F1 sons

Gilles Villeneuve's exploits behind the wheel of a Ferrari made him a legend to the tifosi, even 40 years after his death. The team's current Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc enjoys a similar status, and recently got behind the wheel of a very special car from the French-Canadian’s career

Formula 1
Jun 24, 2022
How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock Plus

How a 30cm metal wire triggered open warfare in the F1 paddock

Porpoising has become the key talking point during the 2022 Formula 1 season, as teams battle to come to terms with it. An FIA technical directive ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix and a second stay appearing on the Mercedes cars only served to create a bigger debate and raise tensions further

Formula 1
Jun 23, 2022
Does Verstappen have any weaknesses left? Plus

Does Verstappen have any weaknesses left?

Having extended his Formula 1 points lead with victory in Canada, Max Verstappen has raised his game further following his 2021 title triumph. Even on the days where Red Bull appears to be second best to Ferrari, Verstappen is getting the most out of the car in each race. So, does he have any weaknesses that his title rivals can exploit?

Formula 1
Jun 22, 2022
How F1's future fuels can shape the automotive sector Plus

How F1's future fuels can shape the automotive sector

In 2026, Formula 1 plans to make the switch to a fully sustainable fuel, as the greater automotive world considers its own alternative propulsion methods. Biogasoline and e-fuels both have merit as 'drop-in' fuels but, equally, both have their shortcomings...

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2022
The breakthrough behind Sainz’s best weekend of F1 2022 so far Plus

The breakthrough behind Sainz’s best weekend of F1 2022 so far

OPINION: Carlos Sainz came close to winning in Monaco but needed that race’s specific circumstances for his shot at a maiden Formula 1 victory to appear. Last weekend in Canada, he led the line for Ferrari in Charles Leclerc’s absence from the front. And there’s a key reason why Sainz has turned his 2022 form around

Formula 1
Jun 21, 2022
Canadian Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022 Plus

Canadian Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022

Plenty of high scores but just a single perfect 10 from the first Montreal race in three years, as Max Verstappen fended off late pressure from Carlos Sainz. Here’s Autosport’s assessment on the Formula 1 drivers from the Canadian Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jun 20, 2022