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F1 | Button on Hamilton vs Verstappen, Russell’s move to Mercedes and 2022 regulations

In a recent interview the world champion Jenson Button spoke about the 2021 title fight between Verstappen and Hamilton, the move of George Russell to Mercedes and Bottas’ departure to Alfa Romeo, as well as the upcoming 2022 regulations in F1.

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F1 | Button on Hamilton vs Verstappen, Russell’s move to Mercedes and 2022 regulations
Fuente imagen: f1.com

The 41-years-old Brit stays close to Formula 1. After claiming his title in 2009 behind the wheel of the white, black and neon-yellow Brawn GP car, in 2021 Button began his work as a senior advisor with his old team of Williams F1, helping them to regain their status in the sport as well as doing ambassador work for them. This year he also (together with Ant Anstead and Mark Stubbs) helped to revive the Radford coachbuilding marque, and launched a menswear collection with Hackett, a British retailer. 

Upon the launch of the clothing line, Button gave an interview to Luxury London where he talked about a few hot topics in F1 right now. First of all, he was asked about the Monza drama, and if one of the drivers was to blame. To that, he responded: “I think it was more Verstappen’s fault – the door was always going to close into turn two. So more Max's fault, but I think at Silverstone the incident they had between them was more Lewis' fault. But, you know, neither of them want to give an inch. And that's what happens in racing and I'm sure it's not going to be the last time.”

Button, who won the Canadian GP in 2011 is definitely used to how difficult the conditions can be. As a reminder, the 2011 Canadian GP was a four-hour race that began with safety car due to rain, has seen Button and his then teammate Lewis Hamilton collide only for Jenson to eventually win the race that day. During the interview, he was asked about the 2021 Belgian GP and if he believes FIA made the right decision. To that, he responded: “It's in the regulations. So yes, they did the right thing. I think there has to be an alternative. First of all, the cars need to be designed [to cope with the weather] or the regulations need to state that they are able to drive in wet conditions.”

Button, who is a F1 champion himself, was then asked about who he thinks will eventually claim the championship title in the head-to-head fight we’re seeing this season. He answered: “I don't know! And that's why the 2021 championship is one of the best I've watched! Two points between them [at the time of writing] and it's either of them who could take the title. 

“The great thing is two very different drivers, two very different teams. And competitive on very different types of circuits. So yeah, great to watch.”

Later on, he was asked about the move of Valtteri Bottas to Alfa Romeo, and subsequently the departure of George Russell, with whom he’s been working this year in Williams to Mercedes. About the move of Bottas, he said: “Yeah, it's always a weird one, when you go from a top team to a not-so-top team. It is a long-term contract for him, so it's the first time he's ever had that in F1. But still, it's a tough pill to swallow. Now he's got to get his head down and develop that team around him and hope they have the funding to move forward.”

When answered if he would have any advice for Russell, he replied: “I don't think he needs any advice, really. I think the main thing is just to be himself – he's got his head screwed on and he is a good person. He has the raw talent, he works hard. So yeah, I think going in there not trying to be something he isn't – just be himself.” 

Lastly, Jenson spoke about the upcoming F1 regulations, and if Formula 1 is becoming more competitive. Speaking about merging the gap between the teams on the grid, if the sport is seeing more close fight right now and if it will in the future, he responded: “Well, it's still the first two teams out front. But it's nice to see McLaren getting in on the action a little bit. Hopefully the new regulations and changes to the budget cap will help the smaller teams. I still think [next year] you’re going to have the top teams fighting at the front, but maybe you will have Ferrari and McLaren a little bit closer. That's what we're hoping for anyway. So we'll have four teams fighting for the championship.”

When asked what type of change the new regulations in 2022 will bring to F1, he answered:” Hopefully for the better. The racing will be better, they'll be closer because of the way the aerodynamics works. It's more ground effects, which shouldn't affect the following car with dirty air as much.”



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