Jenson Button was 'more than marginal' on fuel during the Australian Grand Prix

McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh has revealed that his drivers could have been even quicker in the Australian Grand Prix if his team had not made a mistake with its fuel calculations

Jenson Button was 'more than marginal' on fuel during the Australian Grand Prix

Jenson Button dominated the first race of the season in Melbourne, with Lewis Hamilton coming third after losing a place to Sebastian Vettel under the safety car, but the pair had to limit their pace from early on because they were using more fuel than the team had calculated they would.

"We were more than marginal," revealed Whitmarsh. "Had we raced unfettered we would not have got to the finish line with either car, so from lap eight we were in severe fuel saving mode.

"I think unquestionably we could have gone a little bit quicker. We had a quick car here, and we should have got a 1-2, but we are not too displeased with where we are."

Whitmarsh paid tribute to the way that Button controlled the race from the front - with the Briton running error free

"Jenson did a fantastic job," he said. "He turned it on when he needed to. When he thought that Vettel after the safety car was going to get into a DRS zone he just opened the gap, so I think it was testament to him. He drove a really beautiful race: smooth, controlling, and he pressed when he needed to - just like a champion would."

Whitmarsh also thinks that Hamilton would have finished second if it had not been for his misfortune to have pitted the lap before a safety car - which helped Vettel overtake him in the pits.

"The loss of place was simply that unfortunately we pitted with both cars, and immediately a safety car was called - which cost us 10 seconds," explained Whitmarsh. "Had we decided not to double shuffle and keep him out for one lap, then we would have stayed ahead of Seb.

"We had the pace and performance. This is quite a tricky track to overtake on, so we could have held that and got ourselves a 1-2. So we were a little unlucky - and Lewis will not like being on the lower step of the podium.

"But he has had a strong weekend and I am sure he will be even more determined to go to the next race, show how quick he is in qualifying and get the job done there."

shares
comments
The complete Australian GP review
Previous article

The complete Australian GP review

Next article

Malaysia preview quotes: HRT

Malaysia preview quotes: HRT
The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams Plus

The time-honoured manufacturer model that can't apply to all F1 teams

What happens, asks MATT KEW, if the old adage of win on a Sunday, sell on a Monday is no longer true for F1 manufacturers?

Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie? Plus

Why is Oscar Piastri F1's most sought-after rookie?

The Australian rising star is fast, consistent, confident, adaptable and has shown excellent racecraft, but there’s already a taint to his reputation. That hasn’t stopped him becoming the hottest property in this year’s F1 driver market and why McLaren moved fast to snap up the 21-year-old

Formula 1
Sep 30, 2022
The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver Plus

The unintended benefit that F1's new engine rules era will deliver

Formula 1's incoming engine rules shake-up has multiple targets. But it may also solve what has been a bone of contention since the hybrids arrived in 2014. The new plan will allow the series to pump up the volume

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance Plus

How de Vries made himself impossible to ignore for a belated F1 chance

Nyck de Vries appeared to have missed his opportunity to break into Formula 1 as he was passed over for more exciting talents who have now become frontrunners and title fighters. But after catching the eye outside of the F1 sphere, before his stunning impromptu grand prix debut in Italy, will it lead to a delayed full-time race seat?

Formula 1
Sep 29, 2022
Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment? Plus

Can Hamilton produce another Singapore magic moment?

The Singapore Grand Prix has, explains BEN EDWARDS, played an important role in Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career. As the series returns to the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time in three years, he faces the latest challenge with an underperforming Mercedes car

Formula 1
Sep 28, 2022
Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals Plus

Why Sainz is key to Ferrari achieving its chairman's F1 goals

Although Ferrari's chances of title glory in 2022 have evaporated, chairman John Elkann expects the team to have chalked up both championships by 2026. Both require drivers to play the team game and, having now become more comfortable with the F1-75, Carlos Sainz may be Ferrari's key to title glory

Formula 1
Sep 27, 2022
How F1 has tried to avoid repeating its 2014 engine rules mistakes Plus

How F1 has tried to avoid repeating its 2014 engine rules mistakes

With Formula 1’s future engine regulations now agreed, MARK GALLAGHER wonders if they will provide a more competitive field than past attempts actually managed

Formula 1
Sep 26, 2022
How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era Plus

How its faltering first turbo car advanced a Williams-Honda glory era

STUART CODLING charts the development of the Williams FW09, the ugly duckling that heralded the start of the title-winning Williams-Honda partnership

Formula 1
Sep 25, 2022