Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton build an F1 car
Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton build an F1 car
Posted By: James Allen  |  19 Jun 2010   |  10:05 pm GMT  |  187 comments

As you know, I’m a keen student of viral videos; not many people do them well in F1 and there have been plenty of poor ones.

I quite like this latest effort from McLaren and Vodafone. They have done some lame ones, but the one where the two blokes build a remote control device and persuade McLaren to let them use it to drive a real F1 car was funny.

This one shows Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton, left to their own devices by their mechanics, building what looks like a 2008 McLaren from a pile of parts.

There is some good chemistry and good humour here, which is what these things should be all about. The link to Vodafone is a bit tenuous, but it’s entertaining. It’s clear that Hamilton has far more of a feel for the spanner than Button, who asks at one point, “Did you do any work on your own kart?” because clearly he didn’t!

Check it out and let me know what you think.

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Loved this video, also saw the campervan one too recently, even better than this one in my opinion! Also not been mentioned here



It was a really funny video, but the down side is that they missed alot more parts on the car. The engine did not even run, it was unable to turn over. The fluids was not added to the car like oil and coolent. So much more to building an F1 car besides driving it. I myself have the knowledge of driveing an F1 car i can also design and build an F1 car. Hey FOM,FIA, F1 teams, and F1 drivers do you want a challenge?


i don’t understand why there is so much emphasis on them getting on after all they share language and culture, a slight tilt of the head or flick of an eyelid is understood by the other. has there ever been teammates of the same coulture who never got on? conflicts are always a result of misunderstanding and they’re less likely to misunderstand eachother than if they were of different cultures.
i find it interesting to read james allen’s claim that hamilton clearly did work on his kart. no one uses spanners in that manner without experience. if he didn’t work on his kart then he must be exceptionally talented to handle the spanner fo well. i suspect he worked on his carts for long periods. let’s not forget he started racing at 8, first met ron dennis at 10 and was signed up to mclaren at 13.
as for the film, i think it was scripted and excellently shot. it’s extremely difficult to get all those perfect shots a film crew coordinated by a director. every time i have seen f1 mechanics at work on tv, they wore gloves but button and hamilton only wore gloves for the tire change exercise.
great film nevertheless.


This is just a PR stunt but who cares, McLaren are a superb team with two awesome drivers. I wish the sceptics and haters out there would just shut up and let the boys do what they do best… race and compete. There is obvious chemistry there and I’m sure the lads want to beat each other but if they dont win personally, I am sure they are hoping the other will do well. Its called being a team. I just want to see that silly grin spanked from Alonso’s face.


Sociological body blow for Red Bull

Hans Westbroek

I remember just such a video, oozing camaraderie with Hilton hotels getting the attention rather than Vodafone. Remember that one? Had the sauna scene at the end with Mika Hakkinen and a certain Fernando Alonso in it. It all looked like good fun until they got to Hungary!


When Hamilton and Button are enjoying themselves, but still sparring a little, it gives me some hope towards seeing some good decent competitiveness between two of the best drivers in the world today.

Some have suggested that this might be just for TV, but I do not think F1 drivers are extremely good actors.


Made me laugh. Good fun. Well done boys.


Great genuine chemistry between the two, but i predict it wont last.

What is clear is that the viability and success of the relationship depends almost totally on Jenson. His laid back, easy going attitude helps to defuse any potential tension that may arise between them. This attitude definitely puts Lewis more at ease than he would otherwise be.

This is a benefit, but also a disadvantage to Jenson. He lacks that competitive edge, the selfishness, the killer instinct, and single mindedness that propels greats to want to win at ALL costs. Put simply, as most people already know, Jenson is simply a “nice guy”.

Lewis however, is much much more competitive. This means that he will NEVER let his guard down totally against someone he considers a rival – even if he values the relationship. He will throw that relationship under a bus – if he feels it will hinder his chances.

This is what propel drivers like Senna, Schumacher to push the limits, bend the rules and tether on the edge in their pursuit of glory.

If Lewis ever feels his chances to win are being compromised by the team, and if he ever feels Jenson is part of that, prepare to see a Lewis that WILL disobey team orders, push the limits of team play, stop sharing info, going into “single minded mode” to win the championship. I predict McLaren have a powder keg on their hands if this scenario ever comes to pass.

The only thing driving Lewis is his desire to win – The team comes a close second to that. That is why he is always unable to mask his annoyance if the team ever cost him a win. He believes that if the team do their job properly, he will ALWAYS do his – And most of the time he does. If you give Lewis the car, you are almost guaranteed he will deliver.

Lewis will NEVER accept to be second – unless it is by his own hands.

Some may see this as a flaw – but it is flaw that usually separates the greats from the good.


wake up and smell what you are shovelling,

lewis shamilton is rubbish, he will never be great like Ayrton Senna although he wishes he was him!

He talks like everyone loves him, but really put him in a lotus and he would still be a back runner as he would not be able to give the team information like Senna, or even do what Schumacher did for FERRARI!!

One other thing, I don’t believe the rubbish he said ‘I only wear this yellow helmet so my dad can see me on the track!’ What a load of crap!! look at the green and blue strip just like Ayrton’s, so in actual fact he has no creativity to design his own helmet, starting at a top team.

Well atleast I can say this, enjoy it while it lasts as it is only downhill for him now!!


Thanks James for posting this. Even though it’s a Vodafone PR, you can’t help but notice the genuine friendliness and respect that exists between Lewis and Jenson. It seems like McLaren has got the correct formula this year…which doesn’t bode well for the other teams on the grid. If this keeps up, McLaren may just run away with both championships.


Speaking as a director who has made a fair few viral’s in my time, i think that is absolutely brilliant, and LH and JB either really get along well, or should quit F1 now and get themselves over to Hollywood cos that would have to be of the best acting I’ve seen.

Its great how McLaren who have traditionally been the “Business-like” team of F1, can take advantage of that reputation and have fun with it, and al the other end of the spectrum you have Red Bull who are desperate to be seen as the Cool “on Edge” team in F1, but beneath the vener are probably just as business like and ruthless as McLaren are reputed to have been.


I just think it’s a genuinely fun viral – not the worst way in which Vodafone might try and sell us products. Without wanting to over analyse things do you think that Jenson making an extra effort to justify his move to McLaren? Not that I think he needs to given his relative performance to either of the Mercedes drivers.


Lovely video, i watched this a few days ago and it made me laugh then – and it makes me laugh now – both guys look like they are having fun. 😉

I like the attitude between them both, lewis seems very comfortable in his skin and that is GREAT to see (espeically after the events of lie gate last year) – No doubt both will be ruthless on track, within reason – we know that lewis is a good natured man and i dont think that Frank Williams would call someone a gentleman racer without good reason and he has used that term to descibe jenson on a number of occasions.

great video, i am loving how mclaren seem to be more friendly thesedays.


“the one where the two blokes build a remote control device and persuade McLaren to let them use it to drive a real F1 car was funny.”

Where can I find this video? Very curious to see it.


The link is in several of the comments if you scroll up


Thanks James. Got it. That was pretty funny. Don’t know whether it’s because Whitmarsh is at the helms now but McLaren is a totally different Team than what it used to be under Ronspeak. In terms of how it is with the fans and such. Perhaps even more than just the media aspect of things with what they’re doing with FOTA and the likes. Considering what they’re doing with Force India and how they really tried to help Brawn last year when they needed an engine and the likes. Under Ron they probably would’ve invoked their right to make Mercedes not provide them with the engine… I used to love the company and they lost me a few years ago, but they’re slowly earning my respect again. I wish more teams and F1 as a whole would embrace the internet age because it could really help F1 grow more than it already has. Mostly in the U.S.


The partnership has started off well and it’s nice to see team mates genuinely getting on so well. I wonder in the heat of the championship fight towards the end of the season will they be so amicable towards each other


Hahahaha, that was good.

Finally first team try to entertain the public. It`s not “look at us, we`re racing” but more “Look at us, and join us” stuff. Like it !


I can’t imagine McLaren with this same relaxed feeling with Dennis running the show. Whitmarsh has moved the team forward at a more rapid development pace then I can remember from past seasons and that was definately video of a couple of guys that get along. Harmony in a top notch race team is a real danger for the other teams.


Nice to see your still using any excuse to have a poke at JB james!

You talk about things being tenuous, then you say that JB clearly never worked on his own kart just because he asks LH if he did – why bother mentioning it!




Hater’s gonna be Hatin’


LOL James….you cant please everybody, can you?

Some people will just not see beyond their preconceptions, no matter what or how you write.


I think these types of vid are great. I do think they genuinely get on well.

Hi James,
as an aside I noticed a little air duct/slot just above the main air intakes on the mclaren (to the left of the driver). Just interested to know what that is? Part of the f duct mechanism, which I know is mainly in front of the driver for the duct ? Electronics cooling ?


I think the very interesting thing is that McLaren have rebuilt themselves into a team that people are prepared to like so quickly after last year.

Last year it was a bit lonely trying to put in a good word for McLaren.

The combination of Martin Whitmarsh, Lewis grinding through a bad season and then Jenson bringing his relaxed happy to be here approach has really worked a change, which makes this video work: timing is everything.

I used to dislike McLaren which I think was based on 16 out of 17 (and no Brit likes a winner, by tradition) wins and being a Williams era fan, but Lewis in his first year was such an exciting time in F1 and he personally has kept that up.

Love then or hate them, McLaren are the team to bring real colour into the sport.


McLaren lead others follow, simply brilliant.


Perhaps Red Bull should have made MW and SV to fix the damage together after Turkey. You guys broke it you fix it.
Remember Jack Brabham used to start with a chalk mark on the floor of thr Cooper garage and a pile of ally tubing. Graham Hill started as a mechanic so they both new about getting their hands dirty.


A very fun between the Hamilton and Button!! My respect for MCLAREN is risen. ^_^


My favourite Mclaren viral video has to be the involving Alonso and Hamilton trying to go one better than each other, only to have Haikkinen to show them both who is the daddy at the end. I think it was a Mercedes advert in 2007, very funny.


Isn’t it a MP4-22? In 2008 Ham had #22. In the ad we see #1 on the nosecone, so (if the number is true) it’s the 2007 car and it’s Alonso’s #1 car. If so the things are seems funny 🙂


It looks like a 2008 spec MP4-23 instead(I don’t recall XTB being a MCL sponsor until recently)

The ad was supposed filmed sometime in May 2010, Lewis was already sporting some facial hair by then but have yet to have his ears pierced..

From the looks of it, the ad doesn’t look very scripted and both Lewis and Jenson seem genuinely having fun there..


I think you’re right, it is the 2008 car. But it’s this years livery, and so i’m assuming they’re using the number one as Jenson has it this year.

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