Button says more to come from MP4-25

Posted on Author Keith Collantine

Jenson Button believes the updated McLaren MP4-25 he tested today will be quicker once the team have improved its set-up.

Speaking to reporters at the Circuit de Cataluna today he said:

There’s definitely more to come with this car. We went from having high fuel in the car to going out and doing lower-fuel runs and it’s very difficult because you haven’t done any set-up work. The day was too short for me today, really.

Given another day of testing I know what I’d do to the car to improve it. Hopefully Lewis will be testing a few things that are useful tomorrow. Because to be out of the box with a package that’s this consistent and with the pace that we’ve got, I’m very happy.

I don’t think we are at our maximum yet but we will do our best tomorrow to get the maximum out of the car. The set-up changes the team are thinking about for tomorrow could help us quite a lot and improve the balance. It’s a good update but we’re not getting the best out of it yet because we haven’t done enough laps.
Jenson Button

A rain shower during testing in Barcelona today meant the team weren’t able to perfect the set-up of the revised car before embarking on a race distance run this afternoon. He said:

This morning was frustrating because it was wet but it wasn’t wet enough to get any useful running in. It was greasy – the worst possible conditions you could have.

So it wasn’t perfect, especially when you’ve had an update on the car. This afternoon we did one run which seemed OK and then we thought ‘we’ve got to get into doing some mileage and reliability checks’. Do a race distance and give the boys a chance to do some pit stops.

Our race run was great, we didn’t get any red flags until the last couple of laps of the last stint. The boys did a great job not only with reliability but also with pit stops. It was quite fun because there was a lot of other cars out on the circuit doing the same sort of thing, especially the Ferrari. And there was a little bit of rain for five or six laps.

It was a lot of fun and it was interesting to see what happens through a race, from 150, 160-odd kilos down to zero fuel. It’s about managing the tyres and managing the fuel load. There’s a lot more that you have to think about than last season.

In 2009 you had to think about looking after the tyres, but it was over a 22-lap period and you obviously had a lot less fuel in the car. Now the car is very heavy and it’s going to be very tricky. But we got a lot of useful information today.
Jenson Button

He also gave his thoughts on how the competition is shaping up and tipped Sauber to shine in the opening races:

If you look at the times today on the long runs the Ferrari is competitive – but we all knew that. Others I don’t really know about. But the Sauber’s going to surprise a few people, I think it’s quicker than most people realise. They’ll be up there at the first race.

There’s five or six teams that could be competitive but it’s all a bit of a guessing game at the moment and it will be until we qualify on Saturday at Bahrain. And I think that’s great for the sport and it’s exciting for the fans of F1.
Jenson Button

21 comments on “Button says more to come from MP4-25”

  1. thanks keith. any thing from massa please?

  2. I really do hope the Mac is quick. I just keep thinking they are sandbagging but that’s really because I’m a bit worried about their pace and reliability over their race distance compared to their Mediterranean arch rivals. if all is to be believed, the Scuderia sure looks like the team to beat and at the moment, I don’t know if the Mac’s got enough muscle to slug it out. I sure hope I’m proven wrong. I definitely don’t want to see the Mac dueling for less than 1st or 2nd.

    1. @Kanyima: Did you look at the stint times from today? Jenson’s times were very consistent and about the same as Massa’s. And he finished with the third fastest time. Nothing will be certain until qualifying is done in Bahrain, but IMO McLaren is doing fine.

    2. i think the team to beat are Red Bull… as everyone is trying to ape their previous car, i’m sure they have progressed far ahead in their development… McLaren is looking good too… but since most cars will have major upgrades at Bahrain… the times now have no meaning … only factor is how consistent n long lap times are… and the tyre degradation factor…

  3. It’s interesting to note how both McLaren drivers are impressed by the Sauber. This can only be a good thing, we don’t just want close competition from the big 4 the midfield will be so much fun if it’s tight.

    Thought nit was funny how Lewis din’t mention Ferrari and Jenson pretty much passed over them, inheriting his teams prejudice already.

    1. Thats a reminder of 2000, where apart from Ferrari and McLaren at the front, and the omnipotent Minardi and pathetic Prost at the back, all other teams were closely matched in the midfield.

  4. @Scribe, you haven’t been paying attention. Jenson said the Ferrari was the tightest in terms of reliability and consistency only a couple of days ago. And Lewis said something to that effect in passing too. Prejudice? What prejudice?

    1. Don’t take it so seriously, it was a passing frivolous comment.

      McLaren vs Ferrari, just what prejudice do you think I might be talking about. Not the greatest rivalry in the sport for the last 30 yrs? no surley not.

      McLaren team members have a habit of eating their own livers before praising Ferrari. That predjudice.

  5. Yeah scribe, Henson & Lewis have both been saying how strong the Ferrari looks, unlike Alonso who mentioned he was unimpressed by mclarens pace at Jerez last week.

    1. He was unimpressed with Button’s pace last week. But if Button is happy with his long run pace today, then Alonso ought to be wary of more than just his team mate in a couple of weeks time.

  6. So Jenson thinks the Sauber will be up there? Does that mean we can look forward to more Kobayashi vs Button grudge matches?

  7. Take away 1.0sec from JB’s time and you will get LH’s time. Therefore, the logical conclusion should be that, had LH driven today, he will be at the top.

    I am not worried at all, let Alonso keep undermining the MP4/25 at his own peril :-(

  8. Is it just me or does almost every single team is alleged to be doing well?! Ferrari and McLaren seem confident, Red Bull have set some amazing times, Mercedes reckon they have a chance of winning at Bahrain. Joe Saward claimed the other day Williams had as fast a car as anyone, Force India seem to have improved, Toro Rosso have been setting quick times and now Button reckons Sauber could be a dark horse.

    I think Renault are one of the only teams which isn’t happy with their car yet. Obviously Lotus and Virgin will be slower, but they’re both progressing well for new teams. Anyway, I think some teams will get a shock come Bahrain that they aren’t as quick as they hoped.

    1. It is just like in other sports before the new season all the teams talk up their chances because they usually wouldn’t admit to being rubbish and they probably should have improved on the previous season anyway, the trouble is all their rivals should have improved as well so it is always hard guessing where you will be in the pecking order.

  9. In 2008 Ferrari spent the entire testing season as the team ahead of the pack, granted they where somewhat ahead but they tend to be out developed by McLaren during the course of the year. I reckon they’ll have good sucsess on the fly aways and the counter attacks will come at them in spain. My prediction for the winner at Bahrain has to be Massa, pole and the victory, he loves the track. Suits him to a tee. I reckon Hamilton will nick it in Australia and Alonso will take one or both of China or Sepang. Vettle, even looking beyond his victory last year has always done well in China so it could be his best chance of a victory during the flyaways. Obviously the redbull will be more dominant on the Newey suited tracks so I suspect they’ll be comming to the fore properly in the midseason again. Around when the tracks start getting faster.

  10. I am tipping Ferrari, Red Bull, Williams and Sauber to be the main contenders for pole at Bahrain. It might be utter rubbish, but if it’s not, you heard it here first. ;)

  11. probably after the top four team Sauber is best of the rest.

  12. There’s no doubt it will be another close season but like always it will come down to a 2 horse race…my prediction is a tooth and nail battle between Lewis and vettel with mclaren taking the double. ferrari, sauber and mercedes will fight it out for 3,4+5 (probably in that order) and williams, renault, force india and torro rosso will scrap it out for 6th till 9th. after that…who cares!

    brawn got lucky last year…well at the start of the season atleast anyway. mercedes interfearence will put pay to any chance they have as mercades this year. ferrari will spend the season arguing amounst them selves as to why they still cant win a race whilst with peter back at the helm of sauber and the excellent form the car has shown i’d put a tenner on them to come in the top 5 any day of the year

  13. So McLaren still have more under the bonet so to speak. This is good news…

  14. Honestly u fellas dont xpect the world’s most undeserving champion 2 successfully defend his title? McLaren will b pathetic bcoz they were shortsighted enough 2 keep on developing their 2009 car even when they saw that they were out of it. Ferrari will b the team 2 beat.

  15. p.s. i hate mcLaren . ferrari rules!!!! :)

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