Decision day for Button

After months of speculation and countless arguments from lawyers, Jenson Button should finally find out his Formula 1 future on Wednesday when the Contracts Recognition Board delivers its verdict about which team he is contracted to for 2005

Decision day for Button

The CRB, which finally met in Milan on Saturday to discuss the case, has spent the last three days deliberating its verdict and preparing an official judgment on the case. That is expected to be delivered to the lawyers of both Williams and BAR on Wednesday afternoon - before the news is then conveyed on to Button and the public.

Both BAR and Williams have kept their cards very close to their chest since Saturday's hearing as they await the outcome of the case - and neither side has been willing to express any overtly optimistic comments about its outcome.

Although there had been fears that the CRB's ruling would mark the beginning of prolonged legal proceedings, with the possibility of further action being taken in the High Court by the losing side, insiders claim that such a scenario is unlikely.

Once the Button decision has been made, then the losing team will almost certainly make a swift decision about finding a replacement driver for having lost Button.

In BAR's case, team boss David Richards made it clear last week that he would likely promote third driver Anthony Davidson to a race seat alongside Takuma Sato.

Williams is believed to have already decided that if it does not get Button then it will promote Antonio Pizzonia to the race seat alongside Mark Webber - although Nick Heidfeld is believed to still have an outside chance.

All of this could be exceptionally bad news for David Coulthard, whose hopes of staying in F1 next season are fading rapidly. His only realistic chance is that whoever buys Jaguar is interested in a deal with him.

Button himself is also likely to abide by the CRB's decision - despite speculation this week that he would rather sit out the 2005 campaign completely than race for BAR. What is more realistic if BAR wins is that he accepts a one-year deal with the team before joining Williams for 2006.

With BAR chasing its maiden victory in this weekend's Brazilian Grand Prix, Richards for one is hoping that a line can finally be drawn under the whole controversy.

"Clearly I can't hide my frustration over the situation that arose with Jenson in the middle of the year, but hopefully by the time we get to Brazil there will be a result from that and we can put it behind us," he said.

The one uncertainty that will remain after Wednesday, however, will be Button's future with manager John Byfield. Speculation is rife that the British ace will part company with his manager at the end of the season after being disappointed with how the whole planned team switch was handled and made public.

shares
comments
F1 braces itself for wet Brazil

Previous article

F1 braces itself for wet Brazil

Next article

No Deal with Silverstone, Says Ecclestone

No Deal with Silverstone, Says Ecclestone
Load comments
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Plus

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. DAMIEN SMITH brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Plus

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus Plus

How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Plus

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021