McLaren: How much better than Perez was Button in 2013?
Posted By: James Allen  |  09 Dec 2013   |  2:36 pm GMT  |  182 comments

In the next of our series of analysis of the head-to-head records of team mate pairings, we look at Jenson Button and Sergio Perez’s season together at McLaren.

With Lewis Hamilton leaving for Mercedes, Button had a new team mate for 2013 in the form of Perez. The Mexican joined the Woking-Based outfit after a strong season for Sauber where he scored three podiums and came close to winning the 2012 Malaysian Grand Prix.

It proved to be a difficult year for McLaren, who failed to score a single podium all season for the first time since 1980. The team kept faith in Button, signing the Briton for a fifth year in 2014, but Perez was not kept on with Dane Kevin Magunessen getting the nod.

Was Perez unlucky to lose his seat? Well in qualifying, Button and Perez were pretty much neck and neck, with Perez actually edging it 10-9. Button led the head-to-head 7-3 at the mid-point to the season, as Perez adjusted to his new team, but the Mexican had the upper hand in the second half, coming out 7-2 ahead.

Button scored the team’s best grid slot – sixth in Belgium – while Perez’s best was seventh, which he managed in Monaco and the United States.

When it came to the races, Button was the more consistent, scoring points 14 times and his 4th place in Brazil was the team’s best result of the season. However, Perez wasn’t that far behind with 11 points finishes. They were well-matched in the breakdown, too, with Button scoring points seven times to Perez’s five in the first half and edging it 7-6 in the second half.

Both drivers had a highest finish of fifth coming into the final race of the season, but Button improved on that by a single position with fourth in the season finale in Brazil.

When both cars finished, Button comfortably came out on top 13 times to Perez’s six. And in terms of championship points, Button scored 73 to Perez’s 49 which equated to ninth and 11th respectively in the drivers’ standings.

Check out the statistics below which show that while Button beat his team mate overall, it was closer than it looked.

Button v Perez stats compared (highest respective tally in bold)



Faster qualifying time: Button 9 / Perez 10

Poles: Button 0 / Perez 0

Front rows: Button 0 / Perez 0
Best qualifying finish: Button 6th (Belgium) / Perez 7th (Monaco and US)


Wins: Button 0 / Perez 0

Poles: Button 0 / Perez 0

Points finishes: Button 14 / Perez 11 

DNFs: Button 0 / Perez 0 

Ahead in two-car finish: Button 13 / Perez 6
Highest finish: Button 4th (Brazil) / Perez 5th (India)


Points: Button 73 / Perez 49
Championship placing: Button 9th / Perez 11


First 10 races

Out-qualified team-mate: Button 7 Perez 3
Wins: Button 0 Perez 0
Podiums: Button 0 Perez 0
Points finishes: Button 7 Perez 5
Retirements: Button 0 Perez 0

Final nine races

Outqualified team-mate: Button 2 Perez 7
Wins: Button 0 Perez 0
Podiums: Button 0 Perez 0
Points finishes: Button 7 Perez 6
Retirements: Button 0 Perez 0

The JA on F1 2013 year book is now available to pre-order. It is a large format paperback, with a Foreword by David Coulthard and featuring stunning photography from Darren Heath. It retails at £10-99.

Every copy ordered through this site will be personally signed by me. Copies will be despatched on December 7th in plenty of time for Christmas. To order yours and to be sure of getting a copy click on this link: JA on F1 2013 Book

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Honestly I think Pereze would have become a much better driver than Button is at the moment, had he been given some extra time.

I hate the fact that he is a World Champion because the only reason he has that title is due to Brawn GP.

I also think that same world title is the only reason for Mclaren to still have him in the team for marketing purposes. When his current contract is over my guess is that Magnussen will pair with Alonso.


I have been an avid Formula 1 viewer since the mid 80s when I first followed a season and saw Niki Lauda win his final championship in the "best car" the McLaren in 1984.

Of the 30 championships from then until now, the Driver's Champion - like Niki - has won in the "Best Car" i.e. the Constructors Champion, in 26 years.

Only 4 drivers have managed to win outside the best car.

Lewis Hamilton 2008 - McLaren, when best car was Ferrari

Mika Hakkinen 1999 - McLaren, when best car was Ferrari.

Michael Schumacher 1994 - Benneton, when best car was Williams.

Alain Prost 1986 - McLaren, when the best car was a Williams-Honda.

Of course Senna's death in 1994, and Schumacher's broken leg in 1999, were the "only reason" that Schumacher and Hakkinen were champions in those years.

Therefore it looks like you must be an Alain Prost and Lewis Hamilton supporter - as none of the other champions appear to deserve your respect!


You've hit it on the on the head!


Correct LH it is. IF it is obvious that a car performs so much better than the rest it takes some of the excitement aways isn't it?


I think the team see it like this,,,,, Lewis was beating JB, now JB is beating Checo, he's not quick enough, that's a step backwards, sorry you've gotta go. Simple as that really. The team obviously have very high expectations set by past racers (Senna,Lewis to name but a few) Lewis came in to that car and took it to Alonso from the off. Perez would not have been able to come close if he can't beat JB. JB is a great racing driver but he's no Lewis, Seb, Alonso.



I'm inclined to take Martin Whitmarsh at his word - Perez is good, but the team feels Magnussen is special. The team has data on Magnussen driving the same car at the same track as both Hamilton (Abu Dhabi 2012) and Perez (Silverstone 2013), so they've got benchmarks for both good cars and bad and high and low speed corners.


Yeah, they could gamble with checo who seems solid but not amazing, a different current driver, or gamble with magnusseen. They obviously know a lot about him and I am sure have been paying a good amount to have him in waiting. He seems special and better to have him ready for 2015 then have him spend a year in gp2. But no matter which way they gambled safe to stick with button.

I have to say in button's defense is that he is universally respected in the paddock and could partner with any other driver no problems. Besides that he is the most visible driver, which is awesome and commercially huge for mclaren.


That was a stupid comment. Button fully deserves his WDC and then some. Also, didn't Button take a pay cut to stay on at Brawn when he could have gone somewhere else. That was a brilliant move off track.


No, he took a pay cut so that he wouldn't be out of F1 altogether, for 2009 at Brawn. Then he left right after that for the bigger paycheque at McLaren.


Does that mean you are one of the people who say that Vettel is only World Champion because of the Red Bull car?


I think that he is world champion because he has the best car, but that doesn't mean he couldn't win it in the second best. We don't know if he could or couldn't because he hasn't been in that situation yet, not his fault of course. As a driver if you are given a superior car all you can do is deliver, Seb has 4 times in a row, and obviously Red Bull are happy with him. The point is an element of luck is involved in every championship, obviously the teams capable of producing the best cars can afford the best drivers, so it is natural that most championshipos are won by the best car.


...and by extension the same goes for Jim Clark? Ayrton Senna? ....i'm sorry but that's just a foolish comment that displays your irrational prejudice against the man.

F1 has always been about best drivers in the best cars winning the championship. It's about being at the right time in the right place.


Vettel is yet to be tested. It was shown that Button couldn't even keep up with Perez. Schumacher was Schooled by Rosberg, but you could say that he was a little bit rusted after two years break. Alonso was schooled by Lewis too. We now going to see how he fares against Kimi.

We don't draw these conclusion from only when Button was driving for Brawn GP.


Your point about Jim Clark is [mod], given how fragile and unreliable Lotuses were in the 1960s.


"I hate d fact that he is a world champion because..." Could you please extend that comment to every other WDC on the grid? Why do people always pretend that somebody once won the world championship by racing in his lawnmower?


Because fans with knowledge know that Schumacher's legend is not only 7 titles. It's 1997 and 1998, too


I think Button is singled out because of the controversy over the double defuser rule that Brawn GP was able to exploit. The team's performance dropped significantly as the other teams caught up and Brawn had cashflow issues. Had it been even from the start, there is no way that Button/Brawn would have won. Red Bull would most likley have as they had the best development over the season.


Exactly, they only had the fastest car until Red Bull caught up at the halfway point, by Joost's logic Red Bull should have wiped the floor in the second half of '09.


Toyota and Williams adopted the same approach, but they didn't win the WDC.

It's all very well to say 'had it been even from the start' that Brawn wouldn't have won, but if you use that approach, you have to apply it to Brawn's finances, such that had it been even all the way through and they had the development resources they may still have done so.


people who think button only won because of brawn are very short minded.

mansells car was way superior to the rest when he won. same for Mario Andretti, damon hill, Jacques Villeneuve, mika hakkinen

whoever wins the title have the best car 90% of the time.


IMO Button's world championship only proved he was faster than Barrichello at the time.


Lol Doug, Really? You rank him high because he can overtake safely? In other words he overtakes other drivers when they are more than half a second slower than him?

As for driving in mixed condition, most drivers said it them self that its a lottery. I remember that Lewis was dubbed Lord of the rains in 2008 especially after his fantastic perfomance when Vettel won his first race at Monza.


He made hay whilst the sun was shining...Brawn only really had the best car for 6-8 races in 2009...lack of development budget meant he had to work hard for it at the end of the season.

He's had too many good drives since to prove that 2009 wasn't some fluke. Yes, when Pirelli changed back to the older spec this season, Button's Achilles heel (being unable to generate heat into the fronts) reared its ugly head again (hence his drop in performance relative to Perez).

Is he as fast as LH? IMO 'no'

Is he as flexible as SB? IMO 'no'

Is he a consistantly quick racer, who can overtake safely (99% of the time), leaves other drivers for dead in mixed conditions and displays racecraft right up there with FA & KR? IMO 'yes'

I think these reasons & the fact that he's a very good 'team player' are the reason McLaren have kept him on for 2014.


(personally) When I'm watching formula 1 I find it interesting to see the really fast guys, not the drivers that score high in the season standing due to average high finishes.


Same here, that's why I hated the fact that they had to manage tyre wear. Racing is about going as fast as you can. Qualifying is a good comparison among team mates of who is faster.

Even if we look at who had clever overtaking maneuvers, Lewis was better. Button doesn't really overtake, its not his thing. That's why Perez always pushed him around because he knew he wasn't going to go anywhere stuck behind button.

He drives his car like a bus, only catching up on traffic lights i.e safety cars. He won his championship without overtaking even one car except back markers.


So (personally) do you find that you don't like ANY of the top drivers then? Because all the top drivers "score high in the season standing due to average high finishes." No offence Joost but first Button is unworthy, now that comment, seriously why not just say what you mean? You want to hate Button because you want to hate Button and you don't need a "real" reason. You looked at this article for ammo and found none, you made a silly comment which was firmly rebutted and now again. Seriously you must have something better to do than bitch about someone you've never met. Who's your favourite driver btw Joost? I'm sure using your logic I can come up with 101 reasons why I think their "rubbish".


Will McLaren have a simulator installed in Alonso's home as Ferrari has? I doubt.

I bet if Kevin performs even closer to how Lewis was in his rookie year, Alonso will stay put at Ferrari. But, I don't see a reason for Alonso to move outta Ferrari after 2014, as he would have silenced a lot of Kimi fans by then... 🙂


Kimi will mop the floor with Alonso, and I can't wait to witness this. there will be no excuses. Kimi will never obey team orders and they will both start fresh with a new car.

This also applies to Merc guys. Will see if Rosberg can keep up with Lewis now that they are on equal footing. I bet Redbull will apply team orders on Dan, so will not see his full potential. I reckon if they don't, he will embarrass Vettel. This is going to be so exiting! I literally can't wait.




no no no no no no no!

Be ready to take back your word

dimitar kadrinski

no! no no no...


So if Button is a lousy driver that only became World Champion because of a bona-fide car, why did he beat Hamilton then? And what kind of World Champions are Prost and Senna, who took all of their championships in the best car of the era?


Lets keep it real... on performance, Hamilton smashed Button... Hamilton is interested in winning as a priority - Button likes to go for all the scraps and the fluke points when he lucks out in weather etc...

Points don't always have a lot of meaning... Button should not even be a WDC - his performance has always been mid to back of field driving... just look where he has taken McLaren in one season... that is the real metric.


The difference between Button and other champions is that, others can smoke their teammates consistently. The guy got beat by Fisichella and Rubens. Just because everybody wins with the best car doesnt mean Button is a world class driver and that was his point.

Oh yeah he beat Lewis because the guy was crashing out with Massa.


"Oh yeah he beat Lewis because the guy was crashing out with Massa."

Funny but true.


He didn't, and that's the point.

Lewis had him 2-1.


Jenson beat Lewis for one of the three seasons they were team mates, 2-1 is a win for Hamilton really.


Button only beat Hamilton in 2011, a year in which the title was long gone for both of them by Canada (if not sooner). If the DWC was just between them, then it was 2-1 Hamilton.

Prost beat Senna on total points both years they were together, but that's not what decided the winner in the DWC standings.

Prost's win in 1986 surely wasn't in the best car. Perhaps that's why Prost considers that year his best ever win.


A girlfriend/ex-girlfriend/girlfriend again/almost wife/break-up again named Nicole Scherzinger perhaps?


Yep, that would explain it...


This is such a silly excuse, as silly as the JB copied LH's set up myth.

I've had relationship breakups, but if I let them impact my performance to the extent that Lewis did I'd have been fired after a short time. Of course it's a distraction but I can't seriously believe that once the red lights had gone out, Lewis was driving round thinking wistfully about a bad romance instead of focussing on going fast; not to the extent of the difference between the two.

As for the original statement about Button only winning 'cos he had the best car, that pretty much detracts from many of Schuey's WDCs, let alone other legendary drivers.


Pedro Chung, I don't think your sexist, nearly misogynistic comment insulting Hamilton's former partner and blaming her for Lewis's loss(es) to Button is appropriate for this site.

Scuderia McLaren

Perez's sacking seems like it's mainly because McLaren don't fundamentally rate Button's pace... and if Perez only matched him, even in his first McLaren season, then he's got no hope as a long term prospect. Says as much about Button as it does about Perez. So why do they keep Button? Continuity as a solid no2 to a superstar no1 that they are searching for. Maybe Magnussen is the guy, maybe not? Either way they want Alonso in 2015 and Button knows it and he knows it's not Magnussen they intend of getting rid of.

Button for Williams in 2015 partnering Massa. I called it first. James, remember this one.


There are rumours that Ron Dennis is trying to buy back shares to take overall control of McLaren, if that happens there is no way Alonso will be joining for 2015.


You don't think those boys at Honda want to keep Button on? Japanese culture is honorable, and they paid plenty of money to Williams to get Button. Now they are coming back and they would not "ask" for button to stay on to at least get a little taste of that Honda power?

I agree that Alonso may come back in 2015. I think his Ferrari adventure is over in 2014, and it he won't be invited to the annual Ferrari celebrations, nor will Ferrari be naming anything around the compound after Alonso since no WDC. Of course he's super, it's all the car's fault he didn't win. Besides, all the good things are named after Schumi already.


Not sure bout Button to Willliams for 2o15 but I think you have the McLaren situation assessed perfectly. They know JB is not a star driver in terms of outright pace and that's why Perez got the boot. He needed to be quicker than JB but he wasn't quick enough.


McLaren signed Perez when he looked (in the Sauber) like one of the few drivers on top of the Pirelli tyres. It was a bidding war between McLaren and Ferrari, and McLaren got his signature first. How times change. Button is popular in Japan, he has a Japanese gf. But even without his WDC, Button is (probably) a better bet as a development driver for 2014 and pre '15. McLaren rate Perez ok, he just isn't The Next Big Thing like he was in mid 2012. Perez would have gotten the drive, but Magnussen sat in the simulator and went faster. We will see. The safe money was on Hulkenbrerg, but I'm not even sure McLaren will be better in '14. I have dark suspicions that they were royally knobbled by Mercedes in '13, and next year could be even worse.


I am fairly neutral where Button is concerned. The thing is; he's been around a long time in a sport where they are notoriously quick to dump underperformers - this makes me think he must bring more to the party than we know. Not sure what, but there must be something that the teams see in him or surely he would have been gone, long ago.


We might be arguing slightly different things.

In regards to knowing how to win, I could describe that he has learnt how to win in F1, having done so 15 times. Race management is important and there are important parts to understanding when not to take too much out of the tyres to avoid being vulnerable later on. It is about learning to read a race. Some drivers don't get it. Some don't try to and instead aim to minimise the planned stint time. I feel it is an area where Vettel will have a key edge over Ricciardo next year in knowing how to make things happen. That Button has started a lot of races doesn't matter too much - the more important part is that he's won 15 GPs and lost a few by close margins and seems able to learn.

If you are talking about pure talent to drive a 2009-2013 era F1 car, as opposed to other times, then he's not at the same level as Vettel. On the Autosport team boss rankings Button was #9. That is a ranking primarily based on performances on the track.

But if we look at "not bad for a #2", it is more than just driving talent that sets up who get the psychological support from within a team. The latest Autosport magazine mentions that in 2012 Lotus were favouring Grosjean with development directions until he started crashing. While Kimi explained what he wanted and got great results, his get in and drive nature didn't cultivate the necessary relationship with the engineering staff.

Button was able to walk into Hamilton's team and get at least even and probably ahead on the psychological support within McLaren even though Hamilton was winning more races.

You could go back to 1984 and 85 with McLaren. Contractually Lauda was the #1 in terms of money. He brought two world titles and a lot more experience. Prost had equal technical status and on track he was effectively #1 in terms of results. With those two drivers the driving style was similar, but it was Prost that John Barnard had the stronger relationship with.

In McLaren's case it has a lead driver in Button, who can do all the stuff off track that is required (including the psychological warfare with a team mate), but it doesn't have one of the stars of the last four years. Given the lack of available drivers, it was never likely that Button would be dropped for 2014. Kimi is a better driver in terms of performance, but in a way he's not a #1 driver.


Hi Tim,

My sense is that with Button if the car is just right he is much more than a solid #2 driver. Autocourse had a quote from Jackie Stewart in 2009 following him asking Ross Brawn about Button and Schumacher. If the car was perfect Button could get more out of than any other driver he'd worked with.

Button has had some strong periods. 2004 he was best of the rest, and also had a strong end to 2005. I suspect this era of cars, which favour intricate techniques in slow corners don't help him too much, but next year with much greater torque might suit him better as even in the traction control days he was known for his throttle sensitivity.

There's another side to it as well. In terms of team budgets, the latest Autosport issue alludes to the financial pecking order. Red Bull and Mercedes spent the most money in 2012 and 2013, while McLaren reported a loss in 2012. I presume Ferrari is probably slightly ahead of McLaren on cash terms, so in terms of where the experienced drivers go, there are four top teams with money and Enstone without money. That's eight seats. Vettel, Alonso, Raikkonen, Hamilton, Rosberg, Grosjean (probably), Bianchi and Bottas were all taken by other teams. Whitmarsh has basically said Hulkenberg is too heavy. So in terms of performance who was McLaren going to replace Button with? Apart from Hulkenberg, who would McLaren pick? To me, replacing Button with Sutil or di Resta makes no sense. Button would be worth more commercially than his salary difference to those guys in my view. So while F1 fans might think of say Vettel, Alonso, Hamilton, Raikkonen and Hulkenberg as the top drivers, there are 8-10 seats in the best cars that need to be filled, and at the moment, McLaren is left with choosing from the leftovers.

Among things Button brings is the ability of knowing how to win races - a bit like Alonso's wins in 2012 and 2013, there's a sense of an opportunity and being able to make it happen that some drivers to me seem to have.




Hi Martin,

thanks for your reply, I always enjoy reading your posts as they are polite and well written. However, on this occasion, I don't think you have made much of a case for 'promoting' JB from his solid #2 slot.....

It's all well and good being the best driver on the days when the car is perfect. The snag is, such days, are very few and far between - far more often, the car will not be perfect and the driver has to cope with this. This is not where JB excels and therefore counts against him in my view.

As you say, McLaren (these days) have to choose from leftovers when it comes to drivers - surely, that must mean, JB was in the 'top teams' discard pile. Again, not exactly a ringing endorsement and another negative against him.

Finally, I don't really understand why you believe JB has the ability of knowing how to make race wins happen. He was ranked 3rd in the most race starts before a win for a long time - he still sits in 4th place. This obviously has a great deal to do with the cars he was driving, but the fact he wasn't sitting in a race winning car for so many years cannot be ignored. A further indication of how the top teams view him, in my opinion.

All in all, too many negatives to outweigh the positives. Hence the #2 ranking.


"this makes me think he must bring more to the party than we know. Not sure what"

How bout you all look at the statistics for the last 4 years (excluding the disaster that was this year's McLaren) - that might give you a clue!

More wins than any other driver on the grid bar Vettel and more points than any other driver on the grid except Vettel and Alonso.

Honestly, what else does Button have to do????


How bout you all look at the statistics for the last 4 years (excluding the disaster that was this year’s McLaren)...

Please don't think I'm pedantic, but for your cherry picking of stat's to be correct wouldn't we have to look at the last 5 years, and then exclude this seasons McLaren. eg 2013, 12, 11, 10 and 09.

Starting to get a bit desperate in my opinion (only taking the 4 best years from a 13? year career) and, like all statistic's, doesn't tell the whole story. Anyway, sorry if I offended you, but for me Button just doesn't cut the mustard. He is a solid #2, but hey, who wants to be a #2 ??


Statistics-wise they seem to be somewhat close. Button ahead is somewhat expected: given his experience and familiarity with the team. What McLaren were looking for was that Perez would be like Hamilton who could qualify higher than Button and if everything went off well (that means both inside the head of the driver and the pit, strategy team) could easily be ahead of "no-grip" Button. But Perez was not a Hamilton. So now they brought a rookie hoping that he would be another Hamilton. Perez was unlucky to fill the shoes of Hamilton, he could have easily slipped as a replacement for Button when he retires.


You didn't really give an opinion there James. Do you think Perez was harshly treated, or did he have his chance and not get the most from it?


IMHO, James is a sportscaster/jounalist, not a gossip columnist. He should report correctly and objectively.


+1. I'm glad I'm not the only one that wishes F1 writers would give their opinion. Reporting is so bland. This is sports not politics or serious national journalism. Everyone is so afraid of saying something to upset the establishment or the drivers cause they want that all important access pass. I can't really blame them, though. They're just being smart and playing the game. More editorial style writing please!


Not sure why you need an editorial, this is a forum. The writer (JA) has presented the facts for us to comment. There are plenty of forums that add their own spin to a story, this site has managed to steer clear of such nonsense...and long may it continue.

As for Robert's question, as a McLaren fan I personally think Perez should have been given another year. McLaren gave their drivers a poor car, the least they could have done was build a decent car and then make the decision.


Perez's departure just isn't a tale of numbers. I think it's obvious that McLaren simply wanted someone different. It's too bad because I would have liked to see him in a competitive car at McLaren.


I have doubts that Button can lead a team (sadly). I like Jenson, but I think the Hulk is a better driver who Mclaren should have signed. I can't believe I'm typing this, but if Force India confirm Perez, I would say they had a more talented line up than the boys at Woking!!


they should've signed hulk instead of perez


Statistics don't give you the entire story. Multiple times Perez was unlucky with tyre failures and punctures which put him out of solid points scoring positions. None the less, I feel Perez has been treated harshly. I hope he can find a good seat next year and be able to perform without the negative criticism and the gloomy atmosphere that is McLaren.


Well said Ali. Agree with ya'


So was Button retained to help them ease into the 2014 season, with new regs(ie: stop gap) , considering there's lot of talk about Alonso moving back in 2015


I think he is very unfortunate. Perez out drove button in Monaco and it was his over eagerness that was his downfall. He was well in the points when he crashed out and in front of his team mate. Also, at silverstone, Perez had a good race and was near the frog when his tyre exploded. All the cars had been bunched up too so he lost out big time. These performances were never remembered when the media were contrasting both Perez and button. Perez has potential, button is past it. And only won his championship with a superior car. He is a good team member but I believe Perez should have been retained.


"Perez out drove button in Monaco"

So a driver crashes and that equals him out driving his team mate??

Give me strength!



He would have won if not for that one small detail that, he crashed first.


Given the reports about Perez' attitude, the word "arrogance" seems associated with him, I'm not sure performance was the issue. As is shown, by the end of the season he was on a par with Button, and I'm not sure what more one could have expected. Especially given the car. Seems that McLaren simply couldn't work with him effectively, and went for some one they knew they could work well with.

On top of that, all things being equal, one might think Sergio going back to Sauber would be a no brainer. Given the "love" they apparently had for Sergio, and IIRC, the budget Sergio brings, on paper, he would seem to be a perfect solution for them. But so far, no signing.


I believe that this comments are the closest to reality, it was not a matter of track performance, but several things outside the track (attitude towards press, particularly with English press, participation in Team/Sponsor events, involvement with the team, among others). It is a one time opportunity that was wasted for the wrong reasons, what a shame for Sergio, Telmex and Sergio's fans. Personally I would have loved to see him one more year to continue proving himself on the track.


There is something about Perez that doesn't feel genuine to me - there were also talks that he is a little arrogant and it was the same time, Perez was saying that McLaren was arrogant to admit the car is crap.

All this takes me back to an article from on this site, a little over a year when James felt that Perez lied through his teeth (and was not impressed by it) when asked whether he has signed for McLaren in mid-2012. At that time, the fans were overwhelmingly in support of Perez and James, you thought it was unusual. So James, how do the press see Perez now-a-days outside the racecar?


Nice to see the breakdown in numbers James thank you.

Not considering the rumours of Ron Dennis looking to reassert himself at the helm of all things Mclaren F1, How should Button look approach 2014? If Whitmarsh is intent on recruiting Alonso for 2015, Button should ask himself what kind of teammate would Alonso want? Does he want the young Dane that managed to beat his vastly experienced teammate in 2014, or does he want the experienced team player who brings home the points but is unlikely to challenge for the ultimate prize? With this in mind Jenson should allow Kevin to beat him 2014 if he wants to have a chance of going up against Fernando in 2015! (of course this assumes Honda would want to drop Kevin for the Fernando brand and that Jenson doesn’t want to leave F1 to focus on his new Formula E team )

Should a return of big Ron be on the cards I think Jenson knows his time is up. I doubt Ron would have employed him in the first place, he would have met Kimi’s salary expectations in 2010 and F1 history would be very different.

Note: Mclaren only announced Jenson’s 2014 as an aside to Kevin’s deal. There has been no mention of contract length.


"Does he want the young Dane that managed to beat his vastly experienced teammate in 2014, or does he want the experienced team player who brings home the points but is unlikely to challenge for the ultimate prize?"

Once again I am totally astounded by these comments!!

Please tell me which McLaren driver since 2008 has come closest to the title?

In case everyone has forgotten, Button came 2nd in 2011 and was the only one to challenge Vettel consistently!

Everyone bangs on about Hamilton being a superstar and WDC challenger and Button being a 2nd driver, but Hamilton hasn't finished any higher than 4th in the WDC since 2008!!!!


Uh, 2nd and "only" 122 pts behind!!! What good is 2nd when you're over 100 pts behind?!? Crikey! And you're astounded by some comments?!

Hamilton ended 2010 16 pts behind Vettel, and was mathematically still alive in the last race that season. I think most would count that as going closer to the title than anything Button has done at McLaren.

Button in 2011 could drive with zero pressure ... he wasn't in a title fight, yet had a decent car. He did finally win a dry race for McLaren in 2011 though (his great drive in Japan), that was a highlight.


To make it clearer, there was never at any time talk of Hamilton aiding Button for the DWC. Why not? Because he was never close enough for it to ever be brought up! Yet there was talk of Button aiding Hamilton in both 2010 and 2012. Both times it just amounted to wishful speculation, but it was there regardless.


No one really cares who comes 2nd when it isn't the slightest bit close. You talk as if Button ran him close


Other than HAM vs ROS they were the closest pairing percentage wise

BUT definitely had the edge in scoring points (which brings results for the driver and money for the team)

PER still has to learn not to crash into Kimi (and was not helped by 2 blown tyres) to score more consistently

He was, however usually passing BUT when racing together4

I guess Mclaren was expecting a close result but in Perez' favour in order to keep him

Hope he gets a drive for next year


Perez is not a bad driver! Now that he has been ditched by McLaren it may seem so though. If it weren't for the talented duo they have as reserve drivers, I think Perez would have stayed. Magnussen will be a very interesting prospect, lets see how he fares with the big boys. He seems focused and concentrated to prove everyone what a talent he is.

Perez is the perfect driver for a midfield team, where the spotlight is not on him so much, plus he brings with him quite a bit of cash and that is great for a team like Force India or Sauber. Personally, I think the best of the best drivers should be in F1 and there should be no pay drivers- but what can you do if there are no cost cutting measures in place- it is natural for teams to go that route. I just want F1 to allow smaller teams to be able to be innovative without forcing them to rely on a heavy budget for that.

In any case, I did expect Perez to be faster than Button (at the very least in quail) and he has disappointed in that regard- but he can still improve


I think they were fairly evenly matched with maybe Buttons tendency to stay out of trouble helping him in the races. However, BOTH drivers were not great all season in what it has to be said was a poor car. I can't help feeling that if they had a Hamilton, Alonso, Kimi in the car they would have dragged at least 1 podium out of it.

I am not sure Button is the man to lead the team to be honest and being a nice guy and good with the media seems to leave him immune to serious media critisism in much the same way Webber has been in my opinion.


Well, it is basically Button on top everywhere, but not by much and my guess is that McLaren chose to keep Buttonfor his experience and technical insight for next year and give it a try to Kevin.

While still adjusting to the new team, Perez didn't really impressed in any of the races like he did the year before at Sauber, so, again, my guess is that McLaren decided is worth taking a risk with Kevin rather than continue with Perez.


Perez was pretty much on terms with Button by the end of the season, he seemed faster in Brazil as well


For those of us who follow McLaren let's all hope Kevin Magunessen can lead the team to better results next year.


And let's hope they give him a half decent car so that he can do that.


Hi James, Nice break down. From an outside point of view it's easy to feel a bit sorry for Perez but the team have all the data and he clearly hasn't impressed them, The dog of a car didn't help either driver show what they are really capable of


I think a lot of people rate Button in the 2nd category of F1 drivers. The first category consists of guys like Vettel, Raikonnen, Alonso and Hamiltion. So Perez did a good job, but he did not show consistent flashes of speed against Button, which is why I think Mclaren felt he was a good number 2, but they did not think Button would be a good number 1, hence they dropped Perez. On another note James, any news on Kimi Raikonnen - has he fully recovered and when can we expect to see him in Maranello?


Button was hardly a number one to begin with, he was supposed to play the number 2 to Hamilton but when Hamilton left, Mclaren had no choice but to put their cards behind Button. With Alonso Mclarens first choice for 2015 and Magnussen in for the long haul, Button will be expected to make way in 2015 anyway, and will probably be beaten by Magnussen next year as well


"Button was hardly a number one to begin with, he was supposed to play the number 2 to Hamilton but when Hamilton left, McLaren had no choice but to put their cards behind Button"

These comments just make me laugh!

If Hamilton is such an amazing driver and in the top group of F1 drivers, what does that say about him if his number 2, who apparently is in the 2nd class of F1 drivers, scores more podiums, points finishes and points than him?


This should put things into perspective


Hamilton v Button stats compared (highest respective tally in bold)


Faster qualifying time: Hamilton 44 / Button 14

Poles: Hamilton 9 / Button 1

Front rows: Hamilton: 23 / Button 9


Wins: Hamilton 10 / Button 8

Podiums: Hamilton 22 / Button 25

Points finishes: Hamilton 45 / Button 47

DNFs: Hamilton 13 / Button 8

Best race result (inc DNFs): Hamilton 32 / Button 26

Ahead in two-car finish: Hamilton 24 / Button 13


Overall points: Hamilton 657 / Button 672

Seasons finished higher in standings: Hamilton 2 / Button 1

Highest championship placing: Hamilton 4th (2010, 2012) / Button 2nd (2011)


People like you make me laugh because you somehow forget Button was almost lapped by Lewis in Germany 2012 - unthinkable in any top driver in the same car, tyres etc... People like you forget Lewis car failed twice in comfortable lead of a GP and several other times due to pit stop mess ups, incorrect fuel... People like you fail to understand since 2011 Jensons head has been lodged firmly up Martin Whitmarshs backside and he still has it stuck there.These are the things that caused Lewis to leave Mclaren something I hoped he'd do since 2011 and I wholly expected him to move to a Mercedes long before his Monza announcement.

Jenson is a Very Clever team player but he is not a top level racer and Perez just highlighted that. But for Magnussens tremendous potential & another team principal failure to honour him a drive,the 2014 rule change and Jensons experience --he would have been dropped like yesterday's news.


How many times did Button retire from leading a race in a Mclaren??


Two very different drivers.

JB is a consistent point scorer who maximizes WDC and WCC points.

Perez takes risks at the expense of championship points for overtaking glory - perhaps getting the better race result at the odd race from time to time.

A tennis analogy will be - a David Ferrer who maximizes his ATP points; versus a flashy big server who may land the odd Federer scalp now and then, but cannot break into the Top 10; let alone Top 5.

In motor racing flashy speed always flatters to deceive - because it's very exciting when overtaking happens. But as most serious sportspersons know - flashy brilliance is often thrumped by someone playing well within his capabilities.

Kimi, Alonso, Vettel are all capable of much more - and can pull out the speed when it counts. Perez needs to overdrive and take risks just to achieve the same flashy speed. JB seems to always drive his own race without adjusting to who's around him.

But Perez only had a half season with McLaren being sorted. The car and the team seemed all at sea at the beginning of the season. So perhaps Perez never got the chance to show his talent.

Unlike Perez, Hamilton had a WCC winning McLaren beneath him in his first year.


You really think a Button-Perez pairing could have scored as many points as that Alonso-Hamilton pairing in 2007?

"WCC-winning" also has to include the WCC points that were to be excluded from the Hungary GP that year.

It's not like anyone could've predicted the 2007 McLaren would have been so good, seeing as 2006 was - like this past season - a winless season for them (though they at least managed 9 podiums).

Colombia Concalvez

Nonsense. What has Vettel shown in the middle of the pack ?, tell me what ?, absolute nothing. Look China 2012 for example. And Alonso ?. Let Alonso first drive without his No1 status and let's see how good he really is, look what happened to him in 2004.


All in all, it looks like Perez didn't have that bad of a 1st season. It's a shame he had to take the fall for the car.


Not to take a position in any way regarding the McLaren decision, just seems that why teams decide who to employ (or sell to) for a seat is apparently a mystery to everyone. Except maybe for the financial gain piece.

Fan comments always seem to be based on popularity and empirical analysis of pairings don't always seem to fully support decisions (either way) so it's anyone's guess, or so it would seem.

Would put my money on the internal dynamic of personality and working relationship pieces more than anything as the tipping points and that's mostly kept inside. For example, how a driver exercises judgment based on team expectations.

Except in cases like Moldanodo where he brays about regarding the working relationships without accepting any responsibility for his actions. Seems that at least some of the $$ he reportedly brings to enhance his marketability could be better spent.


McLaren was very lucky in Brazil; Button took 4th but GRO dnf (and Massa was penalized).


I wouldn't say it was all that close, certainly not neck-and-neck. Button's name is in bold in just about every category.


Wow that's exciting he's been in F1 13 years Mclaren 4 years and Sergio lets see 1 + 1 !!

Let's highlight those numbers again please because when you consider Perez out qualified him all year and matched him in races towards the end is there really anything to see here people -- really !! Other than what a waste of space JB is & how much better Hulkenberg would be in the seat


I think has done an excellent job in a sub-par car this season. If you remember well, Button outscored Hamilton by 15 points over three years. Unfortunate that he lost by two points last year, but I believe this is where Button's calculus comes into play. Having entered the summer break 40 points behind Hamilton, Hamilton's fanboys were getting excited at the prospect of Hamilton beating Button;but then at the last race of the season Button peaked at the right time and struck - ensuring he ended up only 2 points behind Hamilton and outpointing him by 15 points overall. Then having established himself as a notch above Hamilton, he set about dismantling Perez this season with great effect - both of his teammates have now left Mclaren due to his great talent. It's just unfortunate how many times Mclaren have let down Button during their time together. I am equally convinced that the only driver who could rival Button is Vettel. These two are a cut above the rest - but for Vettel to convince his doubters, he must prove, like JB, what he could do in an inferior car. If he can, these two will be remembered as the all time greats of the sport and are definite favourites in 2014 due to their technical nous and ability.


Bwahahahaha -- just goes to show you don't have to have a long neck to ........Someone else please finish it for me I can't stop laughing


The Return of OJ!

"... but then at the last race of the season Button peaked at the right time and struck"

Y'mean Hulkenberg struck Lewis, and punted him out of the lead, and the race!!

Button had already lost the season to Lewis in Austin. Remember it was Button 25-0 Lewis in Brazil, b/c of the Lewis-Hulk collision, and Button in behind benefitting.

Button's calculus, lol. Did it go something like this perhaps?

"I'll just lull everyone into a false sense of security by being nowhere and all-at-sea for the first half of the season ... but then, oh yes, then, THEN I shall strike!!"

Pythonesque in its brilliance.


Worst post. How many poles Ham v Button at Mclaren? How many wins? How many ham breakdowns in the lead v button breakdowns in the lead? (None. he rarely leads)


Told ya 😉


This guy is 100% correct carnt understand why more people carnt see it


I think you are being sarcastic. Whatever your intention was, it is very humorous. I have a friend who speaks untruth exactly like this intentionally very seriously only to laugh in the end.

Colombia Concalvez

Seriously mate you need to stop the ''Button out scoring Hamilton'' nonsense. Stop it. Button benefitted from Hamilton's misfortune, is that hard for you to see ?. Button gained 55 points alone from Singapore, Abu Dhabi and Brazil. In those three races alone Hamilton lost 75 points and i have not even mentioned the other races McLaren had messed up for Hamilton. So stop it and tell the complete story and not half stories to make Button look good


"So stop it and tell the complete story and not half stories to make Button look good"

You mean like you saying that Hamilton lost a win in Brazil??

Give me a break! Hamilton was in the process of getting OVERTAKEN for the lead at the time he was taken out! In fact, Hulk had already gotten in front, so Hamilton actually retired from 2nd.

We'll also forget the fact that he was 55 seconds behind Button and Hulk before the safety car and that Button was catching him hand over fist like Hulk and would have been past him within a few laps!

Hamilton would have been lucky to get 3rd in that race had he not been taken out!


It's funny when people make stuff up, when the evidence is but a few clicks away.

Lap 48 is where Hamilton passes Hulk, after Hulk went off the track. At the end of Lap 47, HAM is 3.47s ahead of BUT. In the next laps that gap grows to:

Lap 48: 4.159

Lap 49: 4.664

Lap 50: 4.861

Lap 51: 5.887

Lap 52: 6.005

The gap then dips to 5.860 (-0.145) on Lap 53. Contrast Button's headway (or lack of) against Lewis versus Hulkenberg's, who was catching Lewis after Lap 49, two laps after being passed.

At the tail end of Lap 54, Lewis comes upon Glock and Kovaleinen, and a Toro Rosso, at Turn 14 (i.e. going up the hill to the pit straight), costing him big time.

Go to 1:25:56 into that video, and you'll see how Nico was able to catch Lewis. Their names are Timo and Heikki!

Officially, Hamilton retired from the lead ... he led Lap 54, then was out. They don't look at if there were any lead changes during a lap, only who led it as they crossed the line. This is how Vettel's consecutive laps in the lead streak from late 2012 was able to continue, despite starting from P2 in Korea. Or even this year in Brazil, he was passed on the first lap by Rosberg, but was able to get back in front just before they crossed the line, and so was regarded as having led every lap of the race.


Think someone is fishing for the 'Most Replies to a Single Comment Award, 2013'...


What total tosh, you do know that in there 3 seasons together, Hamilton takes it 2 to 1, the points total you mention gives a total false representative picture, even the most one eyed jenson fan, should admit that in 2012 the 2 point gap between them was not a true reflection of there season, ham had 4 botched pit stops, leading 3 races and the car letting go, apart from oz spa and brazil, jenson was quite frankly poor for most of the season, in a car which in lewis hands was a match for the redbull, to some up there season lewis had zero luck, jenson could not set the car up, saids it all..


Ohhhh you're going to be so swamped with replies OJ 😉



I choked on my food...can I please have some of what you are smoking?


Worst post.


Totally agree , I can't see why people don't give button the credit he deserves.


Wonder who perez will drive for?


It would be interesting to compare places gained in each race compared to their qualifying positions as I think this is part of the reason McLaren decided to part with Perez


Well for what it's worth, Perez was one of the best starters in F1.


Things get even cliser when you only compare the second part of the season.

Or if you take out a couple of rookie mistakes fron the first part.

If Mclaren where looking for potential to develop why not to keep your young driver that has almost match the performance of your other driver with 3 times more experience.

I hope this guy Kevin is as good as they claim. I don't envy him, his comparative parameter it's going to be Lewis rookie season, and even LH has problems matching that season performance.


I never understand the Button-[mod] - Fact: Button outpointed Hamilton during their time together - how many drivers could make a similar claim? Fact Button won a world championship in a car which was only the best for half a season and has won 15 grand prix.

Button outpaced Perez, again and again during races - it was Button's race pace relative to Perez which damned the latter.

That said, I do think Perez got a raw deal, but I can see why Maclaren became nervous of him.

Colombia Concalvez

quote ''Seriously mate you need to stop the ”Button out scoring Hamilton” nonsense. Stop it. Button benefitted from Hamilton’s misfortune, is that hard for you to see ?. Button gained 55 points alone from Singapore, Abu Dhabi and Brazil. In those three races alone Hamilton lost 75 points and i have not even mentioned the other races McLaren had messed up for Hamilton. So stop it and tell the complete story and not half stories to make Button look good''


Then you should see also the complete story behind Button and compare both drivers in terms of DNFs, mechanical issues, bad luck, wouldas, couldas and everything, the conclusion probably be that Hamilton is indeed faster, but Button more consistent as Hamilton's personal life seems to be an issue, the fact in my opinion is that they were pretty well matched during their period together, so, if Hamilton is such a great driver, Button could be consider as a pretty good also.


you have a selectively short memory: Button had mechanical dnfs in the British and German GPs in 2011, a wheel-nut related issue again in Bahrain in 2012, followed by two further mechanical DNFs in Italy and Korea the same year.

He didn't luck into his points tally, he drove damned well for them. And I'm a great Hamilton fan, by the way - I just don't understand the level of grief JB gets sometimes, not the lack of appreciation for his fine performances.


You're right for the most part. Hamilton did have 1-2 more mech DNFs in their time together. Korea '12 for Button was Kobayashi colliding with him. I think Italy '12 was his highest "lost result", running 2nd on track at the time.

JB did drive well for his points. That he sometimes "picked up the scraps" from others' misfortune (including his teammate) is just a by-product of his overall style. He's fairly cautious, sometimes he's far too easy to pass, but there can be very little complaint with his points haul (really, the only mark against him at McLaren would be that horrid stretch from BHN-GBR in 2012). I have my suspicions that he might need to piggy-back off others' set-up info, but that's my own personal opinion.


How many of those was he winning the GP or had it on pole... Oh that's right NONE. Unlike Hamilton who was winning the GP's his car or team failed him -- that's right !!- Now do you understand the diff!


Fact: Button outpointed Hamilton during their time together

It is however, a fairly meaningless "fact". Button outscored Hamilton in one year; a year when Button actually drove pretty well, and at the same time Hamilton had a terrible year. Last year they finished very close in the points, but had Button's performance really been anywhere near Hamilton's? Hamilton was pretty much flawless all year, while Button spent much of the year flailing about inconsistently. He did put three wins to his name, all well-deserved, but how many points did Hamilton lose to team screw ups or unreliability? Without the problems, he'd likely have been challenging for the WDC. Look at Spain... he started dead last after the team's fuelling mess up, Button in 10th... and yet Hamilton came through the field to finish ahead of Button. What's all that about?


You need to look at what you have written again!!

You have just said that Hamilton's flawless season seriously outshines Button's flailing about inconsistently... by being 2 points ahead! So If Button hadn't been struggling he would have obliterated the flawless Hamilton.

It would be interesting to see Button's simulator times this year. I would guess he was seriously ahead of Perez in there. When Button is happy with a car he is all but peerless. It is known that McLaren have had wind tunnel correlation problems. If the simulator was using the flawed data from the wind tunnel Jenson's on track difficulties are entirely understandable.

Colombia Concalvez

2Yak, don't forget Button was lapped too in Canada 2012. Not even Massa or Webber got lapped by their teammates.


The thing with Button is that he's a WCC type of driver. Give him a fast car, he will be fast. Give him a slow car he will be slow. Its generally known LH is faster than JB, and can make a car faster than it really is. But the points tell a difference story where JB finished only 2 pts behind a disgruntled LH in 2012 and 43 pts ahead in 2011, when everybody expected him to be slaughtered by LH.

Colombia Concalvez

For you the same as QJ

''Seriously mate you need to stop the ”Button out scoring Hamilton” nonsense. Stop it. Button benefitted from Hamilton’s misfortune, is that hard for you to see ?. Button gained 55 points alone from Singapore, Abu Dhabi and Brazil. In those three races alone Hamilton lost 75 points and i have not even mentioned the other races McLaren had messed up for Hamilton. So stop it and tell the complete story and not half stories to make Button look good''


you need to consider how much of Hamilton's misfortune is self made.

Overdriving a car tends to break them. It is well know than Lewis is harder on his car than Jenson is. Therefore it is more likely to break!

There is nothing simple about F1 - it is all but impossible to compare 2 drivers... but WDC points will always be the stat that stays in the listings.


McLaren not making decision to let Perez go just like that. They did not see in year 1 of Perez what they had envisaged. They had all the data and information to make this decision.

Earlier in the season Whitmarsh said he needs to bring out his elbows a little more. 2nd half of season no contract renewal for many races and specifically no congratulatory word on Perez except he have done a good job.

The signs all the way - they wanted more from Perez and they did not get what they wanted.

Ultimately weighed between Kevin Magnussen (exiting prospect with in-house data Simulator, test timings, etc) and Perez (all data available and no future superstar). McLaren went for Kevin.



The simulator stats are the bit we don't see. Cars don't break down in simulators and they are only as good as the data they are fed. McLaren have a very highly regarded simulator. All year it has been suggesting that the 2013 car should have better than we saw on track - which is why they kept it rather than return to the 2012 car. I would really like to see how fast Jenson's simulator times are compared to all the others that have used it this year. That would tell us so much more about Perez v Magnussen.


Completely off topic, i've just read that next year the final race of the season is going to be awarded double points????? Who ever came up with this idiotic idea should be locked up in an institution somewhere!!

I'm sorry but this utterly brainless move coupled with the possibility of mandatory 2 stop races, drs, fragile tyres for me at least means F1 is no longer worth my while following. To think that i'm expected to pay to watch this on Sky, I'm lost for words! The lunatics have truly taken over the asylum!

Bye bye F1, thanks for the memories.

Colombia Concalvez

+1. Instead of maksing tired durable for flat out racing they come up with these kind of nonsense.


oh dear! Durable tyres do not give flat our racing!

Those 2 ideals are mutually exclusive. The shorter the tyre life the faster they are. Harder tyres have less grip.

So much in every aspect of F1 (as in life) is about compromise. F1 is set up to require pit stops so you will always get one car using its tyres harder than another... or awful races with no pitstops needed and the pole sitter simply driving off into the distance.

F1 has to find ways to make it entertaining and as cars are required to last longer they get more reliable and boring so require artificial means to provide the entertainment. This is harder to do than we realise and tyres has been one experiment many think has gone too far.

Ultimately it is auto shift gearboxes that has made F1 reliable enough to be boring.


I think McLaren basically have the same problem as Red Bull now; as STR are ditching drivers left, right and centre looking for their next Vettel, McLaren look like they might be starting a similar trend as they try to find their next Hamilton.

I hope I'm wrong though. I've called STR a meat grinder before and I have no desire to think the same of McLaren.


McLaren may have made another blunder by firing Perez. I think they fired him for political or personal reasons. His performances were on par with Button. So, when you take into consideration that he is starting in a new team, he actually did very well. I think McLarens reluctance to demand more of Button and hold him accountable as team leader is a self inflicted wound. We've seen Ferrari do the same with massa for years. Had they made a change, Ferrari would have at least one contructors championship over the last four years. For McLaren their protection of Button is more detrimental to the team because they are protecting their top driver who is underperforming imo. Ferrari was bad also, but atleast they had Alonso to bring home the points. Now McLaren is looking to Magnuss as their saviour. I hope we get another Hamilton, but what's the likelihood of that happening with a F3 driver, with no in season testing etc. Good luck're going to need it.


You just gave McLaren the reason to fire Perez, I agree with you about Massa and Ferrari, yes they had Alonso to score, so in this case, Perez needed to outscored Button, that didn't happen, he cannot use the rookie excuse anymore, so if Button is bad in your opinion and Perez just matched him, why McLaren would keep Perez? Based on your Ferrari example and how they had get rid of Massa years ago, then McLaren should fired both drivers. But what I think is that Button is not as bad as Massa today (I think is a very good driver instead) and his experience could be valuable next year.


Well I guess we just have to agree to disagree. I value experience also but I also think there is no replacement for raw pace. You can coach a driver to make better decisions and not take major risks, but you can't teach a driver to go faster. Not at this level. This is where Perez has the edge over Button. Button outscoring Perez was almost a given. He outscored Perez by 24pts, which is not a lot. And the reason he outscored Perez was due to Perez taking big risks and throwing away points. That is part of the package you get with a raw talent that needs to be polished. It doesn't happen instantly. McLaren just threw their hands up and said, "good bye Perez." The irony in that is they are going to repeat the same experiment that was just starting to bear fruit, with Magnuss! Magnuss has the speed like Perez, but he will also need to be polished, while adjusting to F1 in general. McL said they fired Perez based on Magnuss's pace from sims. If pace is the deciding factor, they should have fired Button because Perez has more pace and was only getting better. McL was wrong in expecting WDC performance from Perez right off the bat.


Never understood how drivers like Button, coulthard, Fisicella etc manage such long careers in such a cut throat sport.

Some talk of consistency and point scoring but I don't get it.

Not a big fan of JB like Irvine and Rubens he is a born no.2 the results for the team tells the story - in the past Macca always seemed to have the ability to spot talant, Mika, Kimi, Hamilton but Perez and Button spell no options.

I too hope they have found a star in this Kevin. They're still my 2nd fav team. But this years driver line up was awful


I think it is a sign of the times whereby experience or sponsorship trumps potential. Given the hundreds of millions at stake and limited testing, a conservative team will opt with an older experienced driver. That way the driver can provide development feedback and also consistency to maximise points. This is particularly the case in the mid and bottom end of the field where one freak result can sometimes mean tens of millions of dollars.


Ok, but McLaren are not a midfield team.......


Notwithstanding the fact that I picked Perez to begin comprehensively outperform Button by the fourth race in 2013, the results of 2013 would be just about you would expect if an equal driver was coming onto an established team, with an established driver, former world champion.

Button edged Perez. Perez was equal to or better (besides the fourth in Brazil for Jensen; way to go, Jensen!) than Button in the second half of the year.

So it became a numbers game, McLaren stuck with a second tier driver, and a driver trying to firmly establish himself as a second tier driver; one had to go for a potential top-tier driver, and in the end, I think that the powers that be just thought Jensen fitted into their brand, a bit better.

Despite the moves which required the other driver to yield (and lose a place), or not yield, and have a crash, (if he can lose that one) then he is still on a trajectory which could take him to the top tier; I don't think we've heard the last, nor seen the best, from Perez, yet.


Perez is not bad and just proves that some drivers don't react well to the big spotlight. Given two or three more years he'd be experienced and could have come back into the front runners better prepared.

That said mclaren are data driven and I know that Perez did NOT provide much quality feedback - it may have been inexperience or even a language barrier but he was not impressing the engineers.

Button gets a lot of flack but everyone at McLaren says the same thing - he is not a good qualifier - he is not on a pace with Lewis ( but then who is?) but their data suggests he was often a match for Lewis on Sundays at many tracks. People can cry about it as much as they want but they are fighting years of data. Blather on about your pet Whitmarsh loves jenson theories all you want. I have a number of family and friends working at McLaren - they rate the guy. Perez disappointed. Simple as that.


Hmmm not sure about that in races were both finished without a problem Hamilton was some 14secs down the road ahead of Buttonq - I'm sure someone into stats would be able to show this.

Also I don't recall Button over taking Hamilton when both cars had trouble free races - I do recall Button running Hamilton into a wall and crashing into a back marker trying to stop Hamilton over taking him

There is no way the data is going to show Button on par with Hamilton in a problem free race. Even last year of both drivers had followed Buttons set up Mecca may well have ended 2012 the same way 2013 ended.


Now look at your points again... taking into account that Button did not and was not expected to qualify as well as Hamilton. Starting further back will always make it harder. So McLaren look at lap times and found that in clear air Jenson's lap times matched the supposedly faster Hamilton's.

Lewis depends on sensing limits by going just past them. Jenson somehow is able to recognise those same limits as he reaches them when in a good car. That means Lewis get his tyres heated more and can qualify better... but then his tyres don't last as long.


Watched the Chinese GP 2011 last night, on sky F1, it was a race Hamilton won, over taking Button on the way then dropping him by some 10secs by end of race.

This I recall happened often - Hamilton also made much better use of his tyres - Button is actually harder on his tyres or loses grip quicker anyway.

Brazil 2012. Button was being dropped by both Hulkingburg and Hamilton before their coming together, so many races- there is no way Button was matching Hamilton in data it would show on track


JAP11 and AUS12 were dry, problem-free races where Jenson beat Lewis on merit. There are other examples I'm sure.

I am a HAM fan, and I believe that clearly Lewis is a better driver, but Jenson was never a dog. Far, far from it.


No one is saying he is a dog....but c'mon he does lack that certain something....... How he survived so long baffles me.


Spot on.. You can't teach this to some !


I personally dont get it, because i think it should be Button to leave. He never defends his position, it all is a bit to kind and safe. Feel like his best time has past. Not to say that Perez is a wonderboy either though.


I should not be surprised by the anti LH comments on this but come on really do people really think they know more than Mercedes AMG. They couldn't,t wait for LH to be out of contract so they could sign him up. JB is a good guy who is good, just not good enough. I actually think Maclaren are not doing JB Any favours. SP is a young driver who in his first year took the challenge well and if the strategic gambles had gone his way he would have outpointed JB by loads. JB should walk away from F1 with his head up. I fear next year could make him look even worse!


Perez just matched Button who isn't considered in the same breath as Hamilton, Vettel, or Alonso. That was McLaren's problem with him I think. I don't feel any sympathy for Perez, he was in a top team this year and underperformed. It doesn't matter whether McLaren got a podium this year or not it is a top team which should have top drivers.


I would think that mclaren took perez hoping to score multi millions headline sponsor from carlos slim's companies. He probably wasn't impressed by the car being rubbish and wisely stayed away. mclaren ditch perez to teach them both a lesson. Perez would be well served going back to sauber and beating button most races next year.


I have a feeling that McLaren are delivering the low expectations message; so they can over deliver.

McLaren was the only team to match Red Bull's development pace, but started so far back from the first race.

However, projecting to the new formula, they were coming up much more than Mercedes, and, I have to admit, all this talk of Mercedes having 'the car' and engine next year, smells.

I still don;t think they have got their development systems and organizational structure working.

McLaren despite one or two front men, do have their organizational infrastructure in place, and it seems like they made a strategic decision to plan for 2014, and use 2013 as the development year.



McLaren made the decision to use pull rod front suspension and have struggled with it. If you remember Ferrari went down that route last year and took 6 months to learn how to make it work - and kept it this year.

It would seem they both think that the 2014 cars need to use pull rods to make the nose changes work properly.


that's what I think.

but what path is AD going down?


Everything depend from where you see things. In my opinion was not fair to expect Sergio to outperform Jenson immediately from the beginning but that is history now. Obviously McLaren was expecting more but if you see things from the second part of the season it clearly show Sergio was the quickest of the two. Jenson is at his limit Sergio I hope can have another chance to show his potential.


These comments are a joke.

If the above stats were showing Hamilton mostly in bold against Button, you'd all be telling us how badly Hamilton thrashed Button.

But no, it's Button ahead in all bu 1 statistic and you tell us the he was matched by Perez???


A driver with 14,years, 4 of which are spent at Mclaren- Can you people comprehend the difference !!not one that just landed this year !!-I can't stand Perez for his crashing antics with Kimi this year! But anyone with any sense can see he easily matched Jenson at the latter stages !

But the decision was based on Mclaren needing Jensons team experience and the tremendous potential of Magnussen- Nothing else!!


We need to see the simulator times. Next year is going to be very different.

Nobody expects Button to seriously outperform a poor car. I would expect that the true figures show that Perez outperformed this years car but doesn't know how or why - meaning he appears a match for Button. I would imagine the simulator times show how they both drive a "perfect" car.


Last year Lewis showed us how you drive a "perfect" car. If you count the DNF in Abu Dhabi and Singapore and Brazil thanks to Hulk and 4 other Pitstop dramas at Mclaren you can see clearly he was right there with Seb and what was Jenson doing in that "perfect car" - only picking up the pieces when Lewis taken out or made the wrong call ( Spa & Interlagos) otherwise he was MIA all year.. He's just not a top line driver!! Doesn't matter the car 2009 was a ground breaking car & even then only just got it!!


I can't help thinking that if that this years Mclaren whilst clearly not a good car, would have had at least one podium finish had they had a driver like Kimi, Alonso, Hamilton who seem to be able to drag results out.

Perez has been incredibly hard done by in my opinion as Button only marginally beat him in what lets not forget was his first year in the car and drivers take time to adjust. Perez also suffered from more bad luck in the year.

Button seems to be immune from critisism from the F1 media due to his good relationship with many of them in much the same way Webber got praised to the hilt from not really achieving that much. (I yesterday posted a similar comment which misteriously got deleted)


What are you on about?

"I can’t help thinking that if that this years Mclaren whilst clearly not a good car, would have had at least one podium finish had they had a driver like Kimi, Alonso, Hamilton who seem to be able to drag results out."

this is the same Hamilton who in his current team he's behind on wins?

Or Alonso being beat by Hulk in a Sauber?

You might as well say if Hulk was in the Ferrari he would have been closer to Vettel


Calm down!

I was merely saying that I think that certain drivers are better at dragging results out of bad cars. Button even when Mclaren had good cars often had balance issues and was way down the grid compared to his teammate. He is a great driver when the car is in a sweet spot and to his liking but does nothing in a bad car.

And yes it is my opinion that Alonso who frequently pulls better results out of a car over long periods, and Hamilton who beat his top class teammate over the season in his first year in a new car, and beat Button in the mclaren would have dragged at least one decent result out of this years mclaren. Lets not forget, there were occasions when Button could not get the car in the top 10 in qualifying when Hamilton was fighting out for wins with Button blaming balance etc.

To your point, Hulk even probably would have got a better result out of the mclaren but I am not sure how you think Hulk 'beat Alonso' just on isolated performances.


I hope Perez gets a drive next year and beat the crap out of Button. LOL...

OK, seriously... I hope Kevin will beat the crap out of Button.

Button does not deserve to drive for a prestigious team like Mclaren. He is fast becoming the bootlicker like Massa was for Ferrari.


James, would it be fair to say that Mclaren would have probably given Perez another year if Magnussen hadn't had such a spectacularly successful 2013 both in terms of his racing and his mid-season test?


Yes Whitmarsh said so on more than one occasion !


There is obviously more than one reason for McLaren to choose Kevin over Perez of which only they know. IMHO though I believe Honda have had a major influence upon this decision, what other reason would encourage Martin to recommend Perez to other team immediately after dumping him for Kev!


It was logic to keep Button, he got plenty of experience, and even though the rules are quite diffrent next year, it may come in usefull.


Does anyone know if perez was paid money as I read that he had signed a contract

With mclaren before they choose kevin


Again with the Hamilton Vs Button opinion showdown?

The race results speak volumes of Button's experience, mental competency and overall consistency. We all know Button isn't the fastest qualifier, however. Having said all that, though, Button is a WDC; Perez is the new bloke, so well done to Perez for keeping Button honest.

There's plenty of time for Perez to iron out his shortcomings. A good season leading to a multi-year contract will help him think big, rather than think for the moment. As for Button, I thought he drove well this season to keep his reputation as a top driver intact. I don't know what's up the road for him, though. Best to him and Perez!


Please, can anybody tell me what does "IMO" mean?


IMO: In My Opinion

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion


Button never was a "Top Driver" and never will be. Hamilton did his best to make him look good but Perez (spoiled brat with deep pockets) out qualified and outscored him in the last half of the season, Time you retired Jenson, before Magnussen does it for you next year.!!


I'm not a button's fan, but I rate him as one of the, overall, 5/6 best drivers out there. not the fastest, but in his own way superb driving skill, very smart on track and great at saving tyres when it's time to and to push when it's needed. not the most spectacular, but very consistent and able to do great overtakes like in brazil.

won wdc with the best car? what about vettel or even alonso who had mass damper(illegal at first and then misteriously turned out legal) and won just because of another driver misfortunes(raikkonen in 2005)? jacques villeneuve, schumacher, mika, senna, prost and many more had a superior car, the best car of the grid and no serious rivals.

even hamilton became wdc thanks to glock, otherwise wdc champion in 2008 would have been massa, like it or not.

every driver who won wdc had the fastest car or one of the 2 fastest cars...only short minded people/fanboys can't get it and think drivers become world champion thanks to super powers. then watch sailor moon or power rangers or chuck norris, maybe you'll wake up sooner or later.

I've got two children, 10 and 13, and both of them understood the concept. that's unbelievable that adults still believe in miracles and blame world champions for winning without deserving it.

then why only button? just because he has not the mediatic aurea of the bad boy who average people want as a world champion?

if you look for nasty boys than you'd better watch wrestling or something like that. that's f1, not football or rugby.

then people need to realise it's not always the best driver(more gifted driver) who wins as it's not always the best singer/group who gets what he/they deserves/deserve , but the one who has the better techical material, the best car, the best team support, the best slave-second driver, the biggest luck, the biggest economical support, the biggest sponsorship and so on.

if it was just up to pure talent than raikkonen should have been 3 times wdc, peterson should have been at least once, just like moss. ickx, scheckter, montoya, frentzen, magnussen father and rindt would have had more recognition, but life is not always fair and doesn't praise pure talent olny, but mainly built up talent: people who, starting from less natural talent, develop their skills through efforts, exercise, diligence, application and experience.

as far as button concerns, he may not be the most naturally gifted driver, but managed to score more points than hamilton in their 3 years together, so it's not to be rated that lower than hamilton, who is very fast, but not perfect and still error-prone.

you can be fast as you want, but if you smash into others people's cars(maldonado, perez, grosjean) or get into trouble then it means that you're fast and stop, you lack other virtues such has smartness, spatial awareness and superior racing skills.

f1 is also about skills, the winner is the one who comes fastest at the end, not the one who does poles or who crashes into other drivers' car.



perez is slighlty faster than button when he needs to show it. at the beginning when his seat was sure, he was always behind button, let alone some qualifying performance.

mclaren is no red bull, no ferrari, no mercedes. drivers are treated almost equally, so if perez was much faster than button, then he would have shown it at the beginning at least in qualifying, but perez engaged many battles with button and button was always the one eho finished ahead of the mexican, let alone the last 3 races. perez needed time to learn and to adapt, but he started to outperform button just in the last 3-4 races when mclaren dropped him in favour of magnusse. he clearly needed to show to other teams what he could do in order to remain in f1. what are we talking about?

perez is not a bad driver, but just like massa, maldonado, grosjean & co, is only good when the car is good. when the car doesn't show improvement they simply disappear, because they need perfect machinary to show their potential, otherwise they seem to lack mental strenght to fight for minor positions or minor points.

maybe perez will improve, but as for 2013 even a blind would see that button was the one who did the better job. perez wasn't that bad, just not on the same level of button. last three races perez outperformed button? yes, other 16 button outperformed perez. do we need to add more?

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