Jenson Button insists that more pressure is on his title rivals as the 2009 world champion winds down to a battle of two races. But the fact remains that if there are two more points-outcomes like Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix at the forthcoming...
Jenson Button insists that more pressure is on his title rivals as the 2009 world champion winds down to a battle of two races.
But the fact remains that if there are two more points-outcomes like Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix at the forthcoming Brazil and Abu Dhabi finales, the Briton will not be world champion.
Some pundits have compared the situation to 2007, when Lewis Hamilton did not emerge with the prize, despite a 17-point advantage with two races go to.
"Vettel is now closer than Kimi Raikkonen was when he won the championship," observed David Coulthard.
Button was asked by reporters after finishing just eighth in Japan how he can avoid the same thing happening to him.
"For whatever reason he (Hamilton) didn't score the points," he answered.
"It's about not making mistakes. That's the important thing. I don't feel under pressure.
"The closer we get to the end of the season, the more pressure there is on the people chasing me," added Button.
Germany's Bild newspaper published a photo-shopped image of Button, 29, wearing a Brawn-branded nappy, after Red Bull's Vettel closed the points gap by 9 points by dominating at Suzuka.
Fastest car aside, another advantage for the 22-year-old German is the full support of his out-of-contention teammate Mark Webber, while Button has to contend with Rubens Barrichello as his closest rival.
"We will do everything to support Seb," confirmed Red Bull boss Christian Horner.
Yet another challenge for Button at the next crucial race is that it takes place at Interlagos, a stone's throw from his teammate Barrichello's birthplace, and also home to fervent countrymen still mourning the loss of Felipe Massa's title to another Briton a year ago.
"It's an interesting situation," Button acknowledges, "but Rubens and I get on well so we'll see what happens when we get there. I'm not worried.
"I like Sao Paulo and I'm looking forward to the weekend. I still have a 14 point lead, let's not forget," he said.