Jenson Button is determined to begin his championship fightback this weekend at the Valencia street circuit. The Englishman has seen his championship lead – once extremely comfortable – eroded alarmingly by the Red Bull squad, with he himself haemorraghing points.
But the hot weather on the eastern seaboard of Spain is expected to play into Button’s hands, as his Brawn car has traditionally gone better at higher temperatures. Button’s state of mind has also been refreshed by the summer break.
“It’s going to be great to get back racing again after the summer break and everyone at the team is looking forward to Valencia,” Button said. “I’ve kept pretty busy over the past few weeks with the London Triathlon at the start of the month and then some time to relax with my family and friends but it’s seemed like a long time without a race!”
The Frome flyer added that he enjoyed being in the city of Valencia, and liked the track, which staged its debut race last season.
“Valencia is a beautiful city and the track is quite fun when it goes round the edge of the marina and over the bridge. It’s quite challenging for the drivers with so many turns and the added factor of being surrounded by barriers means you have to maintain your concentration.
“There’s been a lot of work going on at the factory following our shutdown and with the cars at the front being so close at the moment, it will be an interesting weekend.”
Button’s quotes are designed to radiate calm. His plaintive call on the radio in Hungary about the car being “so bad” gave the distinct impression of a man losing control over his season, but the Englishman has obviously benefited from the mid-season break.
He will have to hope that the Brawn team have rediscovered some of the early-season pace which made them indomitable. The Brackley-based outfit need to buck the trend that has seen them lose so much time to Red Bull, with the likes of McLaren and Ferrari often threatening to outperform them as well.