Jenson Button Q&A

Jenson Button went to last year's British Grand Prix as the new hero, and came away with a superb fifth place after showing his real potential for the first time. This year he'll be happy with a top 10 finish after a disastrous start to his first season with Benetton. Only once has he qualified ahead of team mate Giancarlo Fisichella, and his best finish has been a seventh in a high attrition race in Monaco, some way off the pace. But after some breakthroughs in recent testing he feels a little happier in the car. Can he get it together at Silverstone this weekend? Adam Cooper spoke to him at Goodwood's Festival of Speed

Jenson Button Q&A



"I don't think I'm as happy as I was, obviously! I'm still very dedicated and I still want to win and everything, and I'm trying harder than I was last year. But it's not happening, so it's a bit tough. So I'm not as happy as I was then, but hopefully I will be in the near future..."



"I think you get character building from winning! But then again when you do have it tough, you've got to have the experience to cope with it, which I don't have."



"Ninety-six wasn't the best year ever, but not as bad as this!"



"I don't think it's a problem. You get in a car, and you're there again. I don't think you lose it."



"It was better, definitely. We weren't in the points or anything, but it was an improvement for us, being 16th and 17th. I don't think we would have been there if we didn't have the new engine. We definitely need more to keep going forward. Hopefully the new aero package at Silverstone will help."



"Mine and Giancarlo's starts weren't the best. Now people are getting used to launch control they can get good starts all the time, and we're doing manual starts, so it's very, very tough. As soon as we got off the line I made a couple of places from where I was. My first pit stop wasn't the best either. I think I was a bit long, and they took quite a while to put the front right tyre on, because we had a problem with it. So we lost time and I dropped a place to Giancarlo. Then just before the second stop I had a few problems. The car was getting very jerky, because of a fuel pick-up problem. So they had to call me in, even though Giancarlo was already making a pit stop. So I had to come in behind him and wait, which took 20 seconds or something."



"Yes we did, the second time, but not the first stop, where we changed them. Because I'd lost time I started pushing, and I pushed a bit too hard and locked the front left up. So for the whole last stint I had a vibration at the front of the car, so it was very mixed race really! And then about two laps from the end I don't know what happened, but the rears just locked at high speed."



"I felt a lot more comfortable with the car. I think we've got a good set-up now. In Nurburgring in the warm-up and the race we found a good set-up. We found things in the car that we didn't think we could do. So I feel more comfortable with the car, and it seems to be showing. If you're not comfortable you're going to be off the pace and you're not going to be able to push the car to its limits. But it's getting more comfortable now, and we had two good days of testing at Barcelona. I was really happy with the things we tested. They're not going to make huge differences, but they will be positive."



"We obviously didn't have that much testing this year, because of a few problems we had, which was a big thing. Giancarlo has been able to get used to it more, because he's driven more F1 cars and he's got more experience, and he's been able to click a lot quicker with the car. He's driven so many of them - it's his fifth car."



"Exactly. That is a bummer sometimes when you're tyre testing, because you can't change the car. We haven't done so much tyre testing, and most of it's been with the old car, but lately we realised we needed to do more. We're doing as much as we can."



"We've been testing it, and the tests have been good. I don't know if we'll use it at Silverstone; we're still not quite sure about it. I think that's why we're doing a shakedown at Santa Pod on Thursday."



"I think you need it at Silverstone, because it's very hard on your arms. If we've got it there I'll be very happy, and I think we will. I did two days without problems, and we've got some good settings on it. It is a big help, and if we'd had it for Monaco, it would have been even better."



"Hopefully, yeah. Two cars almost finished in the race in France, just outside the top 10, so a finish in the top 10 is possible. That will be nice, as it's the home Grand Prix and everything, and we think we've got the reliability to do that, which is good."



"Yeah, I love it. I've always gone quite well there, and it will be nice to go back in front of the home crowd and do something."



"Yeah, it was. Because of DC winning, the crowd were all up for it, and they were cheering when I was coming round. So it was a really good feeling."

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