Honda have confirmed that for the third season in a row, both Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello will be racing for the team. Barrichello has had his contract extended to the end of the 2008 season; Jenson Button has already signed a multi-year deal with Honda. Button has been with the Japanese team since 2003, whilst Barrichello joined in 2006 having previously been with Ferrari.
The team are hoping that the stability afforded by the drivers will mean that they can work towards a more competitive season in 2008.
“Although we are still very firmly focused on the current season, I am excited about the opportunity that we have for 2008,” Button explained. “It goes without saying that 2007 has been extremely frustrating but over the past few races we have gradually started to see some improvement.
“We have not had the performance to be competitive this year but what we do have is a very solid team of people which has been boosted recently by some key new appointments. Every team has good times and bad and I am confident that our recent difficulties are now behind us and that next year looks promising.”
Team boss Nick Fry has praised both drivers for being good examples for younger drivers. “They are a great example to young drivers out there looking at how to act in difficult circumstances,” Fry explained. “Jenson and Rubens have been an absolute case study in how to work. They have both driven to a very high standard, have certainly made the very best of the equipment and on some occasions they have done more than we thought possible, which is a great accolade to both of them.
“They are absolutely first class performers, both of them. We need to continue to work on the car and hopefully we can make some progress for the rest of the year and make next year a lot better than this year has been.”
Honda have yet to announce their third driver Honda are happy with current test driver Christian Klien however he is in talks with Spyker over a possible race seat later this season or for 2008 and Honda acknowledge that a race-seat at a smaller team is probably preferable to being a test driver at a larger team.
“We are waiting to see what happens with Spyker who have shown some interest in Christian,â€ Fry said. “We won t be difficult about standing in Christian s way if a driver gets a chance of a race seat over just a driving seat, well, that s what drivers like to do.â€