Button: New Williams F1 owners "not afraid of change"

Jenson Button feels there is a “sense of optimism” at Williams after joining the Formula 1 team as a senior advisor, saying its new owners are “not afraid of change”.

Button: New Williams F1 owners "not afraid of change"

Williams announced on Friday that 2009 F1 world champion Button would be taking up an advisory role with the team on a multi-year deal.

It marked a return to Williams for Button almost 21 years to the day since he was named in a race seat for the 2000 season, marking his F1 debut.

The move is the latest change at Williams following its takeover by American investment fund Dorilton Capital, which has installed a new senior management structure since acquiring the team in August.

The sale of the team came following a difficult period for Williams that has seen it slump to the foot of the constructors’ championship in each of the past three seasons.

Button said that he felt Williams’ new owners were not afraid of trying different approaches and changing some of the team’s habits in a bid to turn its fortunes around.

“I think that they’re not afraid of change,” Button said in an interview on Sky Sports F1.

“In Formula 1, all of the teams have a set of things that they do, and the way that they work and the way they go about it. I think they’re trying to change that, and they’re trying to change the sport up a bit.

“They’re not afraid to try new things, but the people who are running the team, they are very experienced. They have some great ideas, and there’s definitely a good atmosphere in the team.

“This team has won multiple world championships. Obviously things change over time and people come and go, but the core of the team is still there. They’re world champions, they’ve won multiple world championships.

“I look forward to working with them, and however much I can help, I will. It’s one of those things that everyone needs to be pulling their weight. Everyone needs to give 100%.

“The team needs to be passionate, every single person that works there. It can’t be just a job, it’s got to be the passion and love for the sport, and that’s the only way we’re going to fight at the front again.”

Read Also:

Button called time on his F1 career at the end of the 2016 season, but made a one-off return for McLaren in Monaco the following year to deputise for Fernando Alonso.

Since then, Button has focused on racing in sportscars, winning the SUPER GT title in 2018, but has remained involved in F1 through his TV work for Sky TV.

But he felt the role with Williams was a fitting opportunity to return to the series in a more active and involved manner after five years away.

“This felt like the perfect moment to rejoin Williams, a team that gave me so many opportunities when I started my career in F1,” Button said.

“They gave me the drive, they nurtured me through that year, and it really was a very special year for me. This feels like the right time to rejoin the team and I’m excited about working with them to help this team back to the front.

“There's a new sense of optimism. There’s a lot of positive changes for the future. Things don’t change overnight, but they’re on the right trajectory at the moment.

“I’m really looking forward to it. It’s a new challenge, one I’m definitely ready for.”

shares
comments

Related video

Button returns to Williams F1 team as senior advisor

Previous article

Button returns to Williams F1 team as senior advisor

Next article

Seven-driver Ferrari F1 test to include Sainz, Schumacher

Seven-driver Ferrari F1 test to include Sainz, Schumacher
Load comments
The signs that point to F1's rude health Prime

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says Mark Gallagher, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors.

The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat Prime

The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat

OPINION: Formula 1's sprint race trial at Silverstone drew mixed feedback on Saturday, but there remained the true test of how it would impact Sunday's Grand Prix. While fans were busy marvelling at Fernando Alonso's progress, a key lesson was being learned that would directly contribute to the dramatic lap-one clash at Copse the following day

Formula 1
Jul 22, 2021
The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt Prime

The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt

OPINION: Formula 1’s 2021 title fight turned ugly last weekend when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collided at the start of the British Grand Prix. Verstappen thankfully walked away unharmed, but this had been a clash long-since coming.

Formula 1
Jul 21, 2021
British Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

British Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 British Grand Prix will live long in the memory for the dramatic clash between Formula 1's two title protagonists, which opened the door for other drivers to capitalise. One did so in spectacular fashion, while others fluffed their lines

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash Prime

How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash

A poor start for Valtteri Bottas and the lap one clash between Formula 1's 2021 title protagonists gave Charles Leclerc a surprise lead in the British Grand Prix that he almost held to the end. Here's how the Ferrari driver came close to a famous victory, ultimately denied by a recovering Lewis Hamilton three laps from home

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
The signs that suggest Mercedes can win at Silverstone Prime

The signs that suggest Mercedes can win at Silverstone

Red Bull and Max Verstappen scored an early blow against Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes at Silverstone, with sprint qualifying race victory. But that doesn’t mean Sunday’s grand prix is a foregone conclusion. Although Verstappen starts as the favourite, here’s why Mercedes still holds hope of winning

Formula 1
Jul 18, 2021
Uncovering Silverstone's engineering secrets for F1 success Prime

Uncovering Silverstone's engineering secrets for F1 success

Formula 1 returns to Silverstone this weekend, but despite its familiarity to all the teams it is no picnic. Here are five of the key points for engineers to consider prior to the British Grand Prix.

Formula 1
Jul 16, 2021
The 'special relationship' Ferrari will hope to exploit at Silverstone Prime

The 'special relationship' Ferrari will hope to exploit at Silverstone

Ferrari might have snubbed the very first world championship race on British soil but the Scuderia and the UK went on to enjoy some deep connections. As BEN EDWARDS explains, theirs is a shared history that is waiting for its next chapter to be written...

Formula 1
Jul 15, 2021