Button hits back at the critics
Jenson Button has hit back at claims he complains too much when at the wheel of his grand prix car.
The 2009 world champion is currently suffering one of the lowest periods in his Formula One career, summed up by his sixteenth-place finishes in Monaco and Canada whilst teammate Lewis Hamilton raced into the title lead.
Some analysts have correlated his slump with the fact that the tone of the in-car radio transmissions broadcast from his McLaren are usually negative.
The 32-year-old has frequently been heard on the McLaren radio during races describing the problems with his MP4-27’s handling.
But the Melbourne winner insisted he was only relaying information to his team so they could fix the problems at the next pit stop.
“It’s not moaning,” insisted Button. “People say, ‘He always whinges’. You are not whinging.
“It is about developing a car through the race.
“It is what drivers do. If you drove round and didn’t say anything for the whole race, you are doing something wrong.”
The criticism comes as he has sunk to a three-and-a-half-year low of eighth in the race for the drivers’ world championship.
After winning the opening round in Australia, Button has scored just 20 points from a possible 150 in the last six races.
But a majority of the points lost have been down to the mistakes of his own team or car failures.
Button left Canada after the last round in Montreal admitting he was “confused and very lost” after being lapped by his victorious team-mate Lewis Hamilton, who now tops the drivers’ standings.
But Button said the radio information helps speed up efforts to find a solution to his handling problems.
“If you complain about oversteer, understeer or an issue, it is to improve for the next stint of the race,” he said. “At the pit stop, you can raise the tyre pressures, add front wing, you go out and it should be better. A driver doesn’t just drive the car, he engineers the car with his engineers.
“If you have an issue, you try to solve it in the race.
“You don’t wait until the end and say, ‘First stint I had massive understeer’!
“If you do that the engineers will say, ‘Why didn’t you tell us? We could have solved it for the next stint’.”
Hopefully, McLaren will have solved his problems for the next race, in Valencia on June 24.
Info: GMM, Mirror.co.uk