These are troubled times for Rubens Barrichello. After six seasons in the support role to Michael Schumacher at Ferrari he came to Honda on absolutely equal terms to the incumbent Jenson Button. In fact for a time it looked like Rubens might even get to be the clear number one, with Button maybe obliged to fulfil his contract with Williams, leaving Barrichello to be supported by Takuma Sato. It didn't work out like that of course. In fact, so far it's not working out at all.
Although his problems adapting to the Honda only really became apparent once the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend was underway, he'd been protected by his team to an extent during winter testing. Then, while often nip and tuck as quick as Button on the timesheets, in reality they were usually on different programmes and within the team it was obvious that usually he was not quite on Button's pace.
At that stage it was a minor problem. But in trying to put it right it's become a great big looming monster in Rubens' mind, a monster that is coming to life with ever-greater reality each GP weekend.
The trigger for the problem was that Button was inherently around 0.3 seconds faster. No serious F1 driver would be prepared to accept a teammate's superiority without a lot more evidence than that. He'd averaged a similar deficit to Michael Schumacher - even though on his day Rubens could give Michael a seriously hard time - but that was Michael, the world's greatest driver, one of the greatest of all time. Much as that will have sat uncomfortably in the competitive heat of the moment, at least he could largely comfort that itch with the rationalisation of Michael's standing. But Button? A man who hadn't even won a race? That couldn't be true.