Jenson Button rues 'tiny tap' that cost him Singapore GP Q3 place

Jenson Button revealed only a "tiny tap" of the wall cost him a potential place in Q3 of qualifying for Formula 1's Singapore Grand Prix

Jenson Button rues 'tiny tap' that cost him Singapore GP Q3 place

The McLaren-Honda driver found the balance of the car more to his liking in qualifying after struggling in free practice and was on a lap that should have been good enough for the top 10 in Q2 when he grazed the wall with the left-rear wheel exiting the Turn 14 right-hander.

The resulting damage to the wheel caused a puncture, meaning Button was unable to improve on his 13th place and match team-mate Fernando Alonso's ninth on the grid.

"So many people have hit the wall here this weekend and no issues, then I hit the wall and I get a puncture," said Button, who claimed he was only half-a-tenth behind Alonso's lap time when he went off.

"It was a tiny tap, but I pushed the boundaries and thought I could get away with it, and I couldn't.

"All weekend, I struggled massively with the car, but in qualifying it definitely came to me and the pace was good compared to Fernando.

"It would have been a pretty easy Q3, but you have to get round the lap and I didn't."

McLaren had set its sights on being the fourth strongest team for the rest of the season, but Alonso was not disappointed despite ending up behind Toro Rosso drivers Carlos Sainz Jr and Daniil Kvyat as well as Mercedes, Red Bull, Ferrari and Nico Hulkenberg's Force India.

He did admit to being surprised to be behind the ex-Minardi squad.

"We are more or less in that position, it's just Toro Rosso is surprisingly good here," said Alonso when asked why McLaren was not the fourth strongest team in qualifying.

"They have a car that is good for the street tracks with a lot of downforce, a lot of drag but we know after this track we should be in front of them regularly.

"We are still aiming to be the fourth quickest team for the rest of the season, and hopefully tomorrow we will finish in front of them."

Button also expressed concern about the race pace of Toro Rosso and Force India, but expects the picture to change a little but as the track continues to rubber in.

"The Toro Rosso and the Force India have been very strong on long-run pace, but it seems when the circuit grips up we definitely find better pace," said Button.

shares
comments
Nico Rosberg claims Singapore GP pole ahead of Daniel Ricciardo

Previous article

Nico Rosberg claims Singapore GP pole ahead of Daniel Ricciardo

Next article

Sebastian Vettel defends Ferrari's reaction to Singapore GP issue

Sebastian Vettel defends Ferrari's reaction to Singapore GP issue
Load comments
How Lotus F1 uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’ Plus

How Lotus F1 uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’

Cast in the mould of its founder Colin Chapman, Lotus was powerful and daring but 
flawed – as it proved through further soaring peaks and painful troughs into the 1980s. DAMIEN SMITH examines a game-changing era

The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address Plus

The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address

OPINION: Changes to the layout of Abu Dhabi’s circuit aim to reverse the trend of insipid Formula 1 races there - the promoter has even described one of the new corners as “iconic”. And that, argues STUART CODLING, is one of this venue’s abiding failings

Formula 1
Jul 26, 2021
How Ferrari offered Britain's next F1 prospect what Red Bull couldn't Plus

How Ferrari offered Britain's next F1 prospect what Red Bull couldn't

Last year's Formula 2 runner-up Callum Ilott could be on his way to becoming the first Briton to contest a grand prix in an Alfa Romeo since Reg Parnell in 1950. But, says OLEG KARPOV, the Ferrari Driver Academy protege is having to temper his ambition at the moment – outwardly at least…

Formula 1
Jul 25, 2021
The signs that point to F1's rude health Plus

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says MARK GALLAGHER, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors

Formula 1
Jul 24, 2021
The unexpected benefit of F1’s sprint race repeat Plus

The unexpected benefit of F1’s sprint race repeat

OPINION: Formula 1's sprint race trial at Silverstone drew mixed feedback on Saturday, but there remained the true test of how it would impact Sunday's Grand Prix. While fans were busy marvelling at Fernando Alonso's progress, a key lesson was being learned that would directly contribute to the dramatic lap one clash at Copse the following day

Formula 1
Jul 22, 2021
The off-track considerations that led to F1’s Hamilton/Verstappen Silverstone shunt Plus

The off-track considerations that led to F1’s Hamilton/Verstappen Silverstone shunt

OPINION: Formula 1’s 2021 title fight turned ugly last weekend when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collided at the start of the British Grand Prix. Verstappen thankfully walked away unharmed, but this had been a clash long-since coming

Formula 1
Jul 21, 2021
Will 2022's all-new cars look like F1's concept model? Plus

Will 2022's all-new cars look like F1's concept model?

Formula 1 provided its clearest example yet of what the 2022 cars are set to look like when it presented a full-scale concept to the world during the build-up to last weekend’s British Grand Prix. Underneath the special shiny livery was a design that hinted at the future, but teams will be digging into key areas that may reap differing results

Formula 1
Jul 20, 2021
British Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

British Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 British Grand Prix will live long in the memory for the dramatic clash between Formula 1's two title protagonists, which opened the door for other drivers to capitalise. One did so in spectacular fashion, while others fluffed their lines

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021