Button: “Unpredictability is bad for the fans”
After a brilliant start of the season with a victory in the first round a second place in 3rd Jenson performance has gone from bad to worse ending with a double DNF and a 9th place in last three races.
History was made in Monaco on Sunday when Mark Webber took the chequered flag, which meant that – for the first time in the sport’s 62 years – the opening six races yielded six different winners.
The 32-year-old wondered whether fans will question the apparent randomness, saying: "Clearly everyone is excited about so many different winners, which initially was great for the fans and great for the sport. But there will come a time when the fans will say, ‘So anyone can win a grand prix, everyone can lose a grand prix like that?’ (snaps his fingers)."
McLaren star Button acknowledges these are exciting times for F1, even if he is finding it a struggle after collecting just two points from the last three grands prix.
Button, now trailing Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso by 31 points in the standings, said: "Fernando is leading because he has been more consistent than other people. Whether he is in the best car or not no-one is ever going to know, but the consistency is there.
"He is obviously doing a great job – the car is working well – whereas there aren’t many other drivers that have had that consistency."
He added: "I think they’re (fans) finding it a little bit strange now. I don’t know, but hopefully a pattern will emerge after the next couple of races and we’ll understand the teams and drivers we need to beat to win the championship."
The best car/driver combination is seemingly no longer applicable, and instead it is about who can best figure out how the Pirelli tyres work on any given weekend. That would appear to be damaging for the sport, but McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh firmly disagrees with that stance.
Whitmarsh said: "It’s an enthralling sport at the moment. A few years ago people were talking about processional races, and the fact they were so predictable. Well, we certainly don’t have a predictable season. I think an unpredictable race and an unpredictable season is what fans want.
"Right now the championship is anyone’s to play for. We, Lewis (Hamilton) and Jenson can win it, and after six races that is good for the sport. If people now say this randomness is unattractive then that is a 180 to what people felt a few years ago."
Source: The Press Association, Image: Vodafone McLaren Mercedes