Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2014

Emotions run high for Button and Alonso

F1 Fanatic Round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2014In the round-up: Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso admit they were struggling with their emotions ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as Alonso leaves Ferrari and Button faces an uncertain future.

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No great send-off as Button’s career comes to a likely end (The Telegraph)

“It was my family and friends who looked at me in a different way, which made me emotional. Before the race, all the mechanics were there ready for the man hugs and that was really tough. I could see it in their faces.”

Emotional Alonso found race start tough (ESPN)

“I saw the faces of the two guys with the front tyres and they were looking at me with shiny eyes. It was tough to put the car into first gear and start the formation lap.”

Dad would be livid at McLaren uncertainty – Button (BBC)

“[My dad] would be livid if he knew my circumstances right now.”

Jenson Button’s F1 future won’t be decided before end of season, says McLaren’s Ron Dennis (The Mirror)

“The only people pressuring us are the media and the fans and they will be the first ones to criticise if we get it wrong.”

Wolff: Nico will bounce back (Sky)

“It is bittersweet as we worked so hard to make the cars reliable and there was so much diligent work in the background and then we have a problem on a car. I don’t think it would have changed the outcome as Nico had a really bad start and the odds were against him at that stage anyway.”

Marciello gets Ferrari run in test (Autosport)

“Kimi Raikkonen will also be in the car during the test.”

Lewis Hamilton joins F1’s very best after becoming serial title winner (The Guardian)

“With his diamond ear studs, his carefully designed facial hair and his laconic street diction, Hamilton shows that grand prix racing has room for a personality very different from the traditional mode of the European or South American racing driver.”

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Comment of the day

One of many very happy Hamilton fans:

I have been waiting for this day since 2008. It took a long time but finally Lewis got there.

Absolutely gutted for Rosberg. All the fun went out of the decider as soon as Rosberg’s ERS failed. I was hoping for some volatile last few laps but Rosberg’s failure put an end to that.

Mercedes need to work on their reliability for 2015.
Yusha (@Freebird78)

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On this day in F1

Sebastian Vettel brought F1’s V8 engine era to a close with his ninth consecutive win for Red Bull:

58 comments on “Emotions run high for Button and Alonso”

  1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
    24th November 2014, 1:11

    Lol at the Lotus tweet.

    1. they have the best official f1 team twitter account, that’s for sure!

      1. yeah but that twitter stuff won’t sell products, just ask bernie…

        1. Twitter is for old people with Rolex watches ,

      2. Even after a tough end to the season they still have this sense of humour!

      1. @reiter haha, thanks I missed those ones, great to know the goat enjoys it :)

    2. they are the twitter champion.

      1. Also worth a mention is sniff petrol.
        http://sniffpetrol.com/ also @sniffpetrol

        ‘The red bull gives you the wrong kind of wings’ is very funny

  2. So that’s confirmed then, Alonso/Sato at McLaren next year.

    1. Haha lol! I wonder if Sato would be able to handle F1 cars these days

    2. @george “Honda bend over backwards to provide Alonso with a subservient number 2 driver… When asked who he wanted as a team-mate, his ‘Button’ answer actually meant, Button’s number 2 from 2004.. ! Well, if your Indycar seat is under threat, why not move back to F1!” @mattypf1

    3. I think McLaren is yet to announce Fernando because they want to present both drivers at once. Alonso-Button can be a good match to any line-up out there, I’m afraid Jenson’s pay is worth letting him go for McLaren betting on a very strong Alonso. On the other hand, Kevin Magnussen can’t afford a season as reserve driver because Vandoorne will be a real threat in 2016…

      As for Toro Rosso, in Spain they’re 99% sure Sainz Junior is their choice.

      1. @jcost I think Vandoorne is a real threat in 2015…

  3. COTD. Yes, they need to work on their reliability, but the season was spiced up a decent amount by their lack of consistency. Imagine if they’d been bullet proof, every race would have been a 1-2 for the silver cars. Boring. So I’d appreciated the drama the lack of reliability brought us, and it didn’t cost Mercedes either important title. Today – not so much. A fair fight would have been much better.

  4. Button is likely right about what his dad’s reaction would be regarding the McLaren situation. John Button would have probably tried to tell Ron Dennis a thing or two.

    Had to check my driver and team support preferences here to make sure I did not still list McLaren as a team I support. Wish them no ill and hope McLaren/Honda is successful in making the grid more competitive next season. But, this whole situation is yet another reminder of why I do not care for Ron Dennis or his “management style”. It is not necessary to treat loyal people in your organization in a shabby way in order to get ahead.

    1. I couldn’t agree more

  5. nice to see fernando being carried by his team… after 5 years of it being the other way round! :D

    1. Haha, so true.

  6. Maybe McLaren have good reasons to delay their driver line-up decision but that is no way to say goodbye to a world champion, who has won 8 races for the team, beaten all his team mates at least once and came in second in 2011, the best achievement for a McLaren driver since Hamilton’s 2008 championship title.

    1. @girts Whether he is to stay or not, I do agree they are treating him unrespectfull. If they were after Alonso there should be far more certainty for both current drivers by now.

  7. Thanks for the COTD! My first!

  8. Nice to see sato’s MP4/4 has the proper livery, not like the revisionist rubbish they have at Woking.

    1. +1 Happy to see that livery innuts glory

      1. Its glory.

  9. Rosberg may not deserve to win the WDC, But hats off to him for being never give up until the car failed completely. its really contradictive about Hamilton race in Spa and Rosberg race in Abu Dhabi. I mean Hamilton even want to retire soon. IMO probably thats the worst from Hamilton this season, and his comment in Monaco. But other than that and few mistakes, he really make Rosberg like a rookie

    1. @deongunner The difference is that Hamilton had to use that engine again where as Rosberg certainly would not. hence all the donuts by several drivers in Abu Dhabi and not at any single other event.

    2. But this was the last race and the engines are not carriied over into the next race.
      Hamilton’s choice to end Spa early saved him from the same fate probably.

    3. Yeah I know about it, sorry about my silly comment

  10. Apparently Red Bull have enforced contract to stop Vettel testing for Ferrari.
    Golly, aren’t Red Bull are turning into the nasty team.

    – Flexible wings finally caught out
    – Talking down funding for the smaller teams
    – Holding onto contracts once it is clear an employee is leaving
    just to damage the opposition is a negative rather than positive
    competitive strategy.
    – Promodrou’s gardening leave AND their lack of good will for Vettel
    is says they have no sporting Chivalry.
    – Once it was clear that Vettel had Webber’s number they denied
    the public the wheel to wheel racing spectacle Mercedes offered
    us this year. Consigning us to four years of boredom, to the detriment of the sport, because they didn’t want to take Hamilton or Alonso and have some rivalry within Red Bull splitting the points.

    Nyahh… Dietrich be vary careful of Horner’s sporting ethic. He really is more like the new Bernie, who
    doesn’t give a stuff about sporting chances and will double points on a whim, consequences on fair
    competition be damned.

    1. You are right in many ways, but four years of boredom?
      2010 and 2012 where in my opinion incredible seasons, they had everything that a proper f1-season needs. Even 2011 was a good year of racing, despite Vettel winning the championship with 20.000 races to spare. 2013, however, was utterly boring, especially the second half.

    2. @boylep6 – Hold on a second…

      You mention Promodrou’s gardening leave and that they shouldn’t stop employees from joining other teams until their contracts have ended…

      He joined them in September and has already designed a carbon copy of Red Bull’s wing for McLaren to use! Why should they let him out of his contact to join another team and copy parts you have just been working on?

      Putting him on gardening leave makes perfect sense so at worst, he is trying to re-create items that are months old.

    3. @boylep6 Source?

      As for most of your post it sounds like you’re very angry and may need a rest.

      1. Vettel test:
        http://motorsportstalk.nbcsports.com/2014/11/22/vettel-frustrated-to-have-ferrari-test-blocked-by-red-bull/
        @rcorporon

        Wing:
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/30167902

        Prodomou:
        September 2014 was when the Gardening leave expired, remember
        McLaren say he signed in Oct 2013. Various can easily be found with google e.g.

        http://www.jamesallenonf1.com/2014/04/head-red-bull-racing-appoint-new-head-of-aero-as-prodromou-goes-on-‘gardening-leave’/

        Personally, I dislike non-compete clause contracts with long post-employment durations. Employee’s hardly have a chance to protest draconian terms because the power structure between employer and employee, and expecting someone
        to “drop” their profession for a long duration just because they change employer is unfair.

  11. Does anyone else think the long drawn out decision at McLaren may be due to Alonso digging his heels in about the 2nd driver? Perhaps McLaren want K-Mag and Alonso has said “I’ll sign for you but I want Button in the other car?”

    Button would be able to support Alonso in a title bid much more than Magnussen would. Alonso and Button would be a fantastic team with their experience and pace.

    1. @petebaldwin While I know FA is generally known to want to be the one rooster on a team, I’m not sure that is what is going on here. If FA is indeed still trying to affect a one-rooster setup, now with Mac, and they go for it, that will be disappointing to me.

      FA was the one rooster under Briatore, but that was at a time when you practically had to follow suit with MS/Ferrari in order to go up against that elephant in the room. When FA went to Mac he claimed he just wanted equal treatment to LH and was not getting it…ie. he didn’t appear to be insisting on being the one rooster, although many probably assumed that’s what he meant when he complained LH was being favoured.

      I’m not sure who would ‘support’ FA better at Mac, but I don’t consider any team ‘fantastic’ if they are about hanging one driver out to dry to favour the other. If I am misinterpreting you and by support you simply mean help develop the car and grow the team, then Button should be the choice, imho.

      Just to add though…given that FA is still touted as possibly the best on the grid, all the while LH currently is as he has just won the WDC, perhaps both JB and KM would ultimately be ‘natural’ 2nd drivers to rooster FA anyway, and would by default end up supporting FA.

      Anyway, assuming one driver is out at Mac, I don’t see how it is fair that they were not given at least a private heads up at least a few months ago so they could start talking to other teams. That seems only respectful to me, although I guess one could argue that publicly stating an announcement wouldn’t be made until after the season was some advanced notice at least. I do really feel for JB to have had to end this season with this doubt, and that really rings true when he admits his Dad would not have been pleased, and this would possibly not be happening this way if he were still alive.

      1. @robbie – I didn’t mean “support” specifically in a number 1 or number 2 driver sense but more overall.

        Frankly, if you put Alonso vs most other drivers on the grid in the same car, he is going to win 9 times out of 10. That includes Button and Magnussen. For me, that makes him the number 1 driver whether that goes against team policy or not. McLaren don’t need to say anything or treat their drivers differently, Alonso will usually finish in front regardles.

        If you were faster than your team-mate and were going for the WDC, who would you prefer in the other car? Button or Mag?

        1. ” Frankly, if you put Alonso vs most other drivers on the grid in the same car, he is going to win 9 times out of 10 ”

          FA is an allrounder, but against SV or LH, not be so sure on that 9 out of 10.

          1. @il-ferrarista – Yeah I completly agree with that. He wouldn’t beat the top drivers so easilly but against Button or Magnussen (or similar drivers), I would expect him to win fairly comfortably.

            This will lead to him being (in effect) a number 1 driver at some point in the season.

            At that point, Alonso would need a strong team mate to take points off of the oposition and I think Button would be much more reliable given that situation. He would also aid the development of the car much more than Magnussen would I think.

    2. Agree that the situation is likely due to Alonso and Dennis working out demands on both sides and maybe Honda playing a role too. Rumors are that Boullier wants Button and Dennis wants new blood, whomever that would imply. Hard to say which driver Alonso might make a demand for. A more younger, less experienced driver in Magnussen who might be more subservient, or Button who would be better, more experienced with input and support for the whole team.

      I do believe the delay is due to some kind of negotiations about the second driver though. Otherwise McLaren could have announced Alonso and the other driver to be named later.

      1. @bullmello – That has to be the delay as you’d think they’d want to announce Alonso as quickly as possible!

        McLaren don’t go with a number 1 or number 2 driver. Both drivers are given a fair shot at it but I don’t imagine it’ll be far into the season before Alonso is comfortably ahead of either Button or K-Mag. In those situations, do you think Magnusen would be more subservient? I think he’d try and prove himself against Alonso…. If anything, I’d expect Button to be more logical and sensible in his decision making.

        1. @petebaldwin Ok fair enough. You are not talking about a designated 1-2 situation but a natural one, which I also alluded to as being a possibility due to FA’s superior proven talents.

          So given that premise I’m not sure Magnusen and subservient need belong in the same sentence. FA shouldn’t need a subservient, and if KM is eager to prove himself then perhaps he is the better choice as he will offer the team’s best chance for the duo to get them a theoretical Constructors title and have KM rob points from FA’s WDC level competitors.

          So I’m not sure how you see JB, the more logical and sensible one, as being any better than KM for FA, unless you are implying he would stay out of his way, which to me is being subservient, which points to FA insisting on number one status.

          Bottom line for me. FA doesn’t need the help and should welcome anyone as a teammate for the sole reason that he can help advance the car for both of them, and help move both cars up the grid to fight for the Championships. If FA were to find himself so lucky as to have a capable car, he should and would gladly take on any and all challengers, including whoever his teammate is, under the assumption that said teammate has exactly the same goal in mind. So it’s hard to decide…KM because he is out to prove himself, or JB because of his experience. But ultimately all drivers are out there to prove themselves, no?

          1. @robbie – I don’t think Button would stay out of the way but I think he would drive hard and fair like he did against Lewis when he was in a similar situation.

            I believe Button would push him harder, would offer more in the development of the car and would pick up more points than Magnussen over the season. I also think that if the situation required it, Button would be more capable of supporting Alonso.

            As a scenario, final race of the season and Hamilton needs to finish 2nd to win the title providing you win. You are starting on pole with Hamilton 2nd, Nico 3rd and your team-mate om 4th. All you can do is win the race and hope that things work out for you.

            Who do you think would give you the better chance of winning the Championship? KMag or Button?

      2. FYI – JB and Ron talked _right_ after the race, and Sky catched them and asked JB afterward about that. JB said something like “we just had a little chat, nothing more”.

    3. @petebaldwin I suspect the wait was partly due to Alonso maybe having a shot at Mercedes if Hamilton lost the title and then leaves? And then as it did not happen they still have to sort it between Button who’s shown great second half of the season, Magnussen and even Vandoorne who ended just so brilliantly.

  12. The Lotus tweet @ burn is hilarious and fitting, LOL!

  13. Oeiiiiiiiiiiii! (another davidnotcoulthard account) (@)
    24th November 2014, 12:02

    A user calls her/himself Heart of the Sunrise? Whoever you are please reply! :)

  14. I can only imagine McLaren hasn’t signed Button yet over money, because for me the last few races has shown that Jenson is still at the top of his game, and Kevin has, unfortunately, shown nothing of the sort. Perhaps Button’s success in 2011 is now his undoing. He was brilliant that year, and as a ‘reward’ he signed a new contract that put him level in terms of pay with Hamilton, for (if I’m not mistaken) some 16 million euros per year.

    Button may have remarked that he does not need to be racing for money, but for McLaren to offer, and for Button to accept a significant pay cut seems unlikely. After all, the salary is a measure of how a driver is appreciated by the team, and Jenson won’t feel appreciated if his salary is halved or worse.

    Similarly, I’ve been a bit worried about Hamilton’s upcoming contract negotations with Mercedes. He’s just won the championship in style, so perhaps he’s looking for pay rise. The problem is, he’s already earning twenty million per year, so how much higher can one go? It might make sense for Mercedes to instead hire another Nico for 20 million less.

    On this beautiful day though, I’m not worried. He has his second title in the bag, will be with the team next year, and who knows which teams will be competitive in 2016 anyway.

    1. @adrianmorse While I know money is always an issue, I’m not convinced it is an issue at Mac and Merc…at least, from the following standpoint. I’ve always believed that top drivers’ salaries are worth it because they can streamline car development by much more quickly identifying issues and helping find solutions, which could easily cover at least half their salaries in time and resource savings, not to mention their marketing impact. Especially compared to pay drivers who may bring a big cheque only to potentially squander the very money they brought through stalled development. I know the new reality for some teams is that they just have to take that chance. But I don’t think Mac and Merc have to make that sacrifice, nor should.

      I think if it indeed came down to it JB would accept a pay cut just to remain in F1, and I think he would still feel appreciated simply by being chosen over KM.

      I think LH deserves a raise and the team can afford it. They’d be fools to let him go over a few million. I say a few because they’d have to pay a driver something anyway, and will at least be paying LH the same. And…who is this other Nico they could hire for 20 mill less? Lol…check that…probably many drivers would gladly take a Mercedes seat over a pay cheque at this point. I just don’t think Merc needs to save the money and risk ruining a good thing.

    2. I think you could be on the mark here. I am sure it’ something to do with money. My gut feeling is that based on performance, they would like to keep Button. But they have to decide if he is worth the extra cost compared to K-Mag. In this mix I reckon they are waiting for a sponsorship deal or deals to be signed. If they can come up with the right income they will keep Button. If not then it’s goodbye. I hope this does not come to pass.

  15. The Button-saga and the KMAG, Perez promotions lost McLaren a lot of points with me. Their treatment of drivers as light bulbs is not cool and shows a lack of professional courtesy, just like all the lies around the title sponsor – it’s clear RD is back – so this and Alonso re-joining them makes it easy for me not to root for them in the coming years.

  16. The article in The Guardian was a strange read. In some ways it seemed the writer was giving accolades and praise while cleverly acknowledging that Lewis is “very different from the traditional mode of the European or South American racing driver”. With his “his laconic street diction” and such remarks it seems the author is driving at something. Who writes an F1 article like this? With references to Rudyard Kipling and a style of writing as though the author envisions himself the modern Burns, Byron or Blake.

    He did attack Bernie at one point and has this for some of the other former F1 champions; “Jacques Villeneuve was gently mocked for his grunge-influenced wardrobe. Fernando Alonso attracted a boy-band following. Sebastian Vettel brought with him a boyish irreverence. But Hamilton appeared to open up a whole new dimension.”

    He may one of the key sportswriters at “The Guardian”, but this article reads more like a grade school assignment to pen a snobbish, yet flowery F1 article for the upper crust audience.

    1. The Grauniad? Upper crust? I would say “Progressively Liberal Tree Hugging” personally…..

  17. Shame on Mc Laren and F1 as a whole.
    A true Champ and a great ambassador for F1 and sport, having raced without knowing if it was his last one, Jenson deserved more…
    Would love if he finds another drive and kicks Macca next season as Massa did to Ferrari.
    Highly unlikely though.

  18. Must admit I find McLaren’s ruthless disregard for Jenson’s feelings quite encouraging. I remember Montezemolo handing out drives to Badoer ‘because he deserved them’, and look how well that worked. Jenson is a multimillionaire with a 14-year career and a wdc. He’s not a helpless victim, he can just leave if he wants.

    Meanwhile that post-Whitmarsh attitude can only bode well for McLaren IMO.

    Though losing the entire day to an electrical fault on a car they were supposed to have shaken down is not that promising. But it’s early days.

  19. I’ve been watching F1 since the days of Jim Clark and Graham Hill. I realise that we tend to support certain manufactures (seeing Williams getting back to the front is great) but ultimately we follow drivers. I was at Brands Hatch when James Hunt was allowed to restart in the GP because the crowd chanted continuously for him. That’s support. So I like to watch Alonso and Hamilton because of their commintment and the fact that they can just drive round a car’s shortcomings. Ronnie Peterson was another in that mould. I support Jenson because he is totally tuned in to the realities of modern F1 and he does it with aplomb and good humour. Smoothness, tyre management and overall race strategy get you as far forward as possible. His points tally against the young charger in the sister car show that. And he outqualified him and he can still mix it with the best. He deserves to be part if the McClaren / Honda team. Say Hi to your mum and dad, Keith!

    1. Great to hear from you Pete! Glad to hear you’re still following F1. I remember discussing Elio de Angelis with you back in the day!

      Will be in touch if I ever make it to your side of the globe.

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