Button: F1 needs to be "unreachable" for most drivers


Formula 1 needs to be "untouchable and unreachable" to most drivers in order to return to its glory days, according to McLaren driver Jenson Button.

Echoing the thoughts of teammate Fernando Alonso, the British driver reckons the current cars are simply not challenging or fast enough.

Button also feels that, while the tweaks introduced this year have made the engines somewhat louder, it is still not enough.

"Formula 1 needs to be loud. It need to be crazy fast," Button told selected media, including Motorsport.com, on Tuesday.

"It needs to be almost untouchable, unreachable for most people. It's not at the moment.

"Drivers in GP2 are driving around two or three seconds slower than us and other categories as well. There needs to be a bigger step up.

"Kids should be excited about the prospect of seeing a Formula 1 car and seeing one. I think that's lost a little bit.

"Hopefully next year with these new rules we'll get a bit of that back, but there still needs to be a bit more sound, I think.

"Our engine sounds great. The other engine manufacturers sound a bit louder, while ours sounds a lot louder, so it doesn't sound too bad, but it's not revving to 20.000rpm, so it's missing something.

"I still think it's still a sexy, fun sport. I just think we need a little bit more noise, and then it's even better."

Wider tyres needed

Button suggested the plans to make Formula 1 cars faster next year will only pay off if mechanical grip increases significantly.

"The regulations next year are supposed to change," he said.

"If we have a lot more mechanical grip the racing will still be great, but the cars will seem much quicker in corners, which is good because then the driver fitness is important, and the driver possibly could be the limiting factor in a corner, which is exactly what we need as it is a sport."

He added: "I don't feel the tyres are giving us as much grip as we want and I think a driver will always want more grip from the tyre.

"It's mechanical grip, which is positive because it means you can still race. The ultrasoft is good and it will help in places like Monaco and Canada. It really takes us back to three years ago, because the tyres have been getting harder every year.

"Even if the tyres are supersoft they are not the same supersofts from three years ago, it's a harder supersoft, it's more like a soft."

Qualifying changes not necessary

The McLaren driver also fears the planned new qualifying format will only make things more complicated for the fans, as he joined the group of drivers to say the current system was working well.

"There are many things in Formula 1 that need to be changed and I think F1 understands that," Button added. "And there is change happening, which is good. Qualifying wasn't really one of them.

"I think it's important for Formula 1 as a whole to understand that we always need to look for more possibilities to make the sport better and maybe this will be great for the fans and they'll enjoy it.

"I just hope they understand it, because personally it's very confusing and I know the sport pretty well. If it works correctly and the fans like it, I love it, because that's s a big part of our sport.

"But I like the system now, and if this new knockout system will be better, I don't know, but it seems very complicated."

Interview by Aleksander Kabanovsky

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jenson Button
Teams McLaren
Article type Breaking news