McLaren faced 45km/h speed deficit in Russian GP, reckons Button

Jenson Button reckons his McLaren Formula 1 team did a "perfect" job in the Russian Grand Prix considering Honda deployment problems created 45km/h (28mph) straightline speed deficits in places

McLaren faced 45km/h speed deficit in Russian GP, reckons Button

Honda is aware that its ERS (energy recovery system) is a major weak point, but homologation regulation restrictions mean little can be done until after the season.

Button said he felt like a "sitting duck" in the first couple of laps with the deployment deficit making driving "scary" at particular points on the track.

But a combination of a retirements and mistakes from rivals meant McLaren got both cars home in the points, only for Fernando Alonso to get a five-second penalty for corner-cutting that demoted him one place to 11th.

"A big thing for us is deployment because we're not deploying for very long on the straights," said Button, who finished ninth - 1m19s behind race winner Lewis Hamilton.

"So you're using more fuel and cars are overtaking us into places you would not expect.

"People were passing me everywhere - a sitting duck, as they say - on the first couple of laps.

"The worst bit is they try and overtake into Turn 12 which is a very scary place and I can't see the closing speed of the car behind so it's difficult.

"I haven't got DRS and they have and I haven't got deployment and they have so it's a massive closing speed of about 45km/h so it's really tricky to judge.

"It's tough but we got points. We did nothing wrong, we did everything right."

Though Button admitted McLaren had not made any performance steps, he was pleased with how the team executed the race.

"It is not massive progress in terms of pace but we did a lot of stuff with the set-up this weekend.

"As a team, we did a good job. We did the best possible.

"If we had a competitive car, we would have been competing at the front because we had the perfect race.

"We got points so it's not so bad but it's not through speed.

"There is a lot of work to do, especially in terms of deployment. The next race, we should be more competitive."

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