After several weeks of maintaining a 'no comment' status in regard to his future, Jenson Button has confirmed that he wants to stay with BAR. This time last year Button intended to leave BAR in favour of Williams for 2005 but was unable to do so...
After several weeks of maintaining a 'no comment' status in regard to his future, Jenson Button has confirmed that he wants to stay with BAR. This time last year Button intended to leave BAR in favour of Williams for 2005 but was unable to do so due to contract issues. Now the Englishman has backed BAR as his best bet of winning the title in the future.
"The BAR team is my best chance of becoming Britain's next world champion," Button told Autosport magazine. "For me, the best thing is to stay with BAR, not just in short term."
It's near enough exactly the same thing he was saying about Williams last year, but things at Williams have changed and the Grove squad is evidently not such an appealing prospect any more.
Although it is yet to be confirmed, Williams will almost certainly part company with engine supplier BMW at the end of this season, and the German manufacturer will take over Sauber in 2006. Rumours suggest that Williams will turn to Cosworth for an interim year before teaming up with Toyota in 2007.
So, Williams is likely to be without factory backing in 2006 but over at BAR, Honda now owns a 45% stake in the team. That commitment is one of the reasons Button wants to stay. However, Williams claims it has a contract with Button for 2006. Button hopes Williams will be understanding.
"I'll certainly be able to look him in the eye when I see him in the paddock," Button said, in regard to Frank Williams. "We have quite a lot of history together, going back to before 2000, so we need to be adult about it and understand the situation. I can understand Williams' situation, but Frank has to understand mine as well."
"To be competitive next year any team has to be with a manufacturer that is fully involved. The position has changed a lot with Williams from last year. A racing driver's career is short, so you have to make the best you can of it."