BAR keeping hold of Button

BAR keeping hold of Button

Who will be Juan Pablo Montoya's replacement at Williams is a hot topic currently and some have tipped Jenson Button for a return to the team in 2005. Button started his Formula One career with Williams in 2000 but moved to Benetton when Montoya...

Who will be Juan Pablo Montoya's replacement at Williams is a hot topic currently and some have tipped Jenson Button for a return to the team in 2005. Button started his Formula One career with Williams in 2000 but moved to Benetton when Montoya arrived the following year. The 23 year-old Briton signed with BAR for 2003 and beyond and team principal David Richards has every intention of keeping hold of him.

Jenson Button.
Photo by Brousseau Photo.
"Letting Jenson go is not even under consideration," Richards said, according to The People newspaper. "The options we have on Jenson for 2005 and 2006 are very tight really as far as we are concerned. I have no reason to believe that with the team improving and the way he is improving that Jenson would not be with us."

Richards has high confidence in Button's abilities and while Jenson has yet to set foot on the podium in his career, the team boss believes 2004 will see BAR fighting near the front of the grid.

"We want to be challenging for the title and all of us working together will let us achieve that goal," he said. "We expect to be in a position to challenge for at least podium finishes next year and mix it up with the top three teams."

Button finished equal ninth with Jaguar's Mark Webber in the drivers' championship in 2003 and BAR fifth in the constructors'. The team was over forty points behind fourth placed Renault so there's still a way to go, but Richards believes Button could claim the title within a couple of years.

"I don't want to make any promises, but Jenson can become the next British world champion," he remarked. "Next year's car looks very positive and if we keep making the progress that we are Jenson is in a great position to claim the crown. We have set goals and Jenson becoming world champion in the next couple of years it is not out of the question."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Williams , Benetton