Button needs to prove himself says Gascoyne

Button needs to prove himself says Gascoyne

Renault technical director Mike Gascoyne has echoed Jacques Villeneuve's opinion that Jenson Button needs to prove his worth on track this year. Villeneuve recently said that new BAR team mate Button would have to drive well to earn his respect...

Renault technical director Mike Gascoyne has echoed Jacques Villeneuve's opinion that Jenson Button needs to prove his worth on track this year. Villeneuve recently said that new BAR team mate Button would have to drive well to earn his respect and Gascoyne, who worked with Button at Benetton in 2001, thinks the young Brit needs to raise his performance.

Jenson Button.
Photo by British American Racing.
"Jenson is one of those drivers who you could put in a Ferrari and watch him win races and the world championship," he said, "but so could a lot of them out there. He's done three years in Formula One, and he's done a reasonably good job."

Gascoyne admitted that that Benetton's car in 2001 was uncompetitive but Button's then-team mate Giancarlo Fisichella handled it much better. The Renault man thinks Button could win if he had a good car: "We gave him a bad car, sure, and you needed to be experienced to handle that kind of situation," he said. "Long term, if Jenson has a good car, he is capable of winning races but as I say, so are a lot of them. Does he have the extra spark? He's got that to go and prove."

Villenueve was irked that he was being compared to Button on the same level by the media and has been reserved in his judgement of his team mate's performance. Several people have said that Button may find it hard to cope with the Canadian's attitude and has a lot to prove.

"He's up against Villeneuve, who is a guy who has won a world championship," said Gascoyne. "Good luck to him. He is a very nice and pleasant young man -- but he has got to go out there and perform at that higher level now.'

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Giancarlo Fisichella , Jenson Button , Jacques Villeneuve , Mike Gascoyne
Teams Ferrari , Benetton , British American Racing