Dennis urges Button to raise his game

F1 Fanatic Round-up

Jenson Button, McLaren, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2014In the round-up: McLaren boss Ron Dennis says he wants Jenson Button to try harder.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Jenson Button needs to improve, says McLaren’s Ron Dennis (The Guardian)

“Do I want him to try harder? Of course I do. He’s a highly paid grand prix driver. Yes, we are not giving him the best car; yes, it would be challenging for him to win in this car to say the least, but he could do his bit and Kevin has to make it as difficult for him as possible.”

Consortium behind purchase of Caterham F1 (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

“A Swiss-Middle Eastern consortium is understood to be behind the takeover of Caterham F1, in a deal that will be confirmed in the coming days.”

Sutil doesn’t regret Sauber move (Autosport)

“I had wonderful years with Force India, and I needed a change and I went to Sauber.”

Smedley instils ‘no fear’ attitude at Williams (ESPN)

“My message to everybody after the race is that when you are racing up at the sharp end it comes down to the little details. When you get the details wrong that’s what happens, you go from first to fourth.”

Hamilton: In karting, some of the kids had more money than me… I was just faster! (Daily Mail)

“My stepmother Linda gave up the idea of going shopping and getting nice new purses and clothes to keep me racing. She would be in the back of this box trailer we had, next to a gas fire, sitting with my brother on her lap and with a pot of noodle soup. It was the best.”

How Honda developed a hybrid F1 car (Racecar Engineering)

“Development began in earnest in the summer of 2007, and in just nine months, track tests were conducted using the prototype vehicle RA1082 (a vehicle built to check the system functionality). The technology then went into the RA1089 (race prototype) and then it was planned to be installed in the RA109K (racing vehicle) in 2009.”

Austria 2014 – race edit (F1)

Video highlights from the Austrian Grand Prix.


Comment of the day

Not long ago people were asking for more team radio communications to be played in F1 broadcasts. But do we now need less of it?

Modern engineer-generated driving removes huge areas of potential mistakes or driver interpretation from the races, which are two of the areas where overtaking and great racing comes from.

Keep all the electronics as they are, but ban pit-to-car radio. Instead, just have a set of standard messages they’re allowed to send to the dash: “pit this lap”, “retire car”, “five-second penalty”, etc… If a stewards decision has to be communicated to the driver, instead of Charlie taking to the team, he tells the driver directly.

From the forum

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On this day in F1

The most celebrated piece of racing Formula One has ever witnessed occurred on this day 35 years ago.

While Jean-Pierre Jabouille gave Renault their first victory with their previously derided 1.5-litre turbocharged car, his team mate Rene Arnoux was bested in a no-holds-barred battle for second place with Ferrari’s Gilles Villeneuve.

You’ve probably seen this clip dozens of times before. But even so, take a moment to relive the glorious sequence in full – and note just how far back Villeneuve was before launching his all-wheels-locked dive down the inside of Arnoux to reclaim his lost position. Scintillating.

Image © McLaren/LAT

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119 comments on Dennis urges Button to raise his game

  1. Mads (@mads) said on 1st July 2014, 10:52

    Ron Dennis’ comments on Button got me thinking…
    What is the purpose of publicly criticize their own driver.
    Don’t get me wrong, I like his honesty, but I just don’t see the point.
    Couldn’t he just tell him in person, that he expects more from him?

  2. Timothy Katz (@timothykatz) said on 1st July 2014, 11:22

    That’s a fantastic clip from Dijon all those years ago. Wonderful racing. But two things jump out at me –
    Firstly, (and it may just be the lack of image clarity) there do not seem to be many marbles off line. That must have made it easier for drivers to take alternative, attacking lines through the corners. Can we have fewer marbles today and see what affect that has on overtaking, please.
    Secondly, look at the people actually standing on the track at the finishing line! Not just on the last lap, either. How was that ever thought to be sensible?

    • PeterG said on 1st July 2014, 12:20

      There was a lot less marbles back then because the tyres were rock hard since there were no planned pit stops back then so tyres were built to go the full distance.
      As tyre compounds got softer & pit stops started to be used the marbles increased & its been a far greater problem in the Pirelli-era because of the way the tyre degredation works.

      Pirelli keep saying every year that there working on reducing the level of marbles & that there latest tyres will produce less, Doesn’t ever actually seem to happen though.

    • HoHum (@hohum) said on 2nd July 2014, 6:06

      @timothykatz, that is just one of the reasons I keep saying that gimmick tyres are making the racing worse rather than better.

  3. karter22 (@karter22) said on 1st July 2014, 11:57

    “Hamilton: In karting, some of the kids had more money than me… I was just faster! (Daily Mail)”

    OMG! Will Lewis ever stop with his attempt to portray himself as a dirt poor kid?? Come on Lewis, after Alonso, Your my second best driver because of talent alone but these coments are really getting boring and distastefull. Just drive for God´s sake!!!
    The man has his own jet for crying out loud! Enough with the comments!!!!

    • Sharon H (@sharoncom) said on 1st July 2014, 12:23

      Why is Hamilton taking so many trips down memory lane to his karting days lately? Is it just that having Rosberg as a teammate is prompting a nostalgia quest from the paddock journalists?

      I don’t see other drivers being asked about their karting time so often. Van der Garde was a kart world champion and you don’t seem to get journalists asking him to hark back to his glory days at all.

      • matiascasali (@matiascasali) said on 1st July 2014, 15:10

        because he’s a millonair who wants to appeal to the working class fans, portraiting himself as one of them. It happens in football too, with Tevez being born in a shanty-town vs Messi who was silver spoon fed by the Barcelona. It’s a marketing issue…

        • karter22 (@karter22) said on 2nd July 2014, 5:04


          It’s a marketing issue…

          That´s what I have been thinking all along for a while now… Starting with clean cut “wonder boy” Vettel. Now that everybody is bored with vettel, they have to market a new clean cut guy and who better than Britney??

          Will we ever have a pure championshipagain?

  4. coefficient (@coefficient) said on 1st July 2014, 12:57

    Looks like the writing is on the wall for Jenson. I think he better try finding a berth in another team or this could be his last season. It’s a shame because he’s a nice guy but as a staunch Button fan I fear we may have seen his best by now. Perhaps a final couple of years with the Scuderia would be in order if Alonso jumps ship.

  5. MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 1st July 2014, 13:30

    Those articles in Racecar Engineering about the RA109 from Honda are absolutely fascinating. I, like most people I think, always assumed that the BGP001 was basically the RA109 with a different powertrain. While it is true that it did retain a couple of features, notably the double diffuser, it’s interesting to see that Honda had actually developed an incredibly innovative car which never really saw the light of day. In particular its interesting KERS system, very innovative gearbox and differential design, and a few aerodynamic bits and pieces which were totally unique.

    Obviously it’s impossible to know how good a car could have been just by seeing the specs, but it does look like it would have been a very technically innovative car. By contrast, the BGP001 appears just to be a relatively ‘normal’ car whose success came about mostly through the double diffuser and the fact that a few other top teams dropped the ball.

    I wonder how much of that innovation will have been developed further behind the scenes, and whether we could hope to see some of it appear on the McLaren next year.

  6. Ben (@scuderia29) said on 1st July 2014, 14:02

    hamilton really needs to stop going on about how he was somehow less privileged or poorer than the other kids in karting, this aint x factor lewis…a sob story isnt gonna get you anywhere, you were hardly poverty stricken

    • Dave (@raceprouk) said on 1st July 2014, 18:22

      So when asked by a reporter what his karting days were like, he should lie?

      • matiascasali (@matiascasali) said on 2nd July 2014, 2:11

        no, but he can say “fun” or “useful” or “great experience” and any other thing anyone can say about their childhood activities. Besides, he was poor against what? did he ever see what was the places some footballers grew up? scarce money is quite different from NO money

  7. WarfieldF1 (@warfieldf1) said on 1st July 2014, 14:27

    Ron is the founder, he believes everyone is an employee, therefore dispensable. He even said in a radio interview in Hamiltons last season the he should remember he is an employee.
    He likes to have the best drivers, its unlikely he thinks Button is one of those, very few think he is the best.
    Button was a Whitmarsh signing; AND its contract time so anything to drive down price.
    Surely Boullier is pushing for Grosjean.
    In Buttons defence,
    it would not be the best time to throw out such an experienced driver just as new engines are coming for what must be an interim year.
    His team mate should have been beating him on speed to secure his position, i feel he is under the real pressure at this stage unless he suddenly starts displaying startling speed.
    Honda. I think they will want Button and really only a Vettel, Alonso or a Hamilton could justify loosing Button.

  8. Corrado (@corrado-dub) said on 1st July 2014, 18:34

    I may be wrong, but I think RDennis is thinking a lot at Alonso… and probably he expects comparable performances at all levels from Button given the cars are pretty much matched. That being said, I also think it’s too late to ask more from Button. He’s too old, for too much time in F1 to prove anything else than we know already, to change his driving style a lot for better, to be faster in particular. The moment McLaren will get rid of him, I think he’ll end like Massa, at a team good for P10-P16. We shall see if he’ll be lucky enough, like Massa, and that “team” will make significant progress in performance when Button will be there.

  9. Michael Brown said on 1st July 2014, 19:26

    Bernie threatens to drop Monza after 2016:

  10. SauberS1 (@saubers1) said on 1st July 2014, 22:21

    I think they will really try to get back Hamilton.

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