McLaren’s Jenson Button has revealed he is still targeting the 2013 Drivers Championship, despite the teams shaky start to the season.
Despite only scoring two points in the opening two rounds in a car which seems hugely off the pace, the Briton is still upbeat about his chances. He used 2009 as an example, remembering that Vettel nearly beat him to the Championship despite not scoring a single point until round five.
Button had a disappointing debut in Melbourne this year, finishing in a lonely ninth while his fortune hadn’t improved for Malaysia where he retired from the race on the penultimate lap. Yet, the McLaren’s pace does seem somewhat improved since Australia.
“The championship is still on as far as I am concerned and I am aiming for that. Definitely,” Button said in an interview with The Daily Mirror. “Sebastian almost beat me to the title in 2009 and he didn’t score for the first four races. It’s a massive turnaround for us. Most of the race in Sepang we were quicker than the Lotus. Most of the race we were quicker than Ferrari. Who would have thought that five days before?
“It was such a positive weekend until the pit stop and it hurt,” he said. “And it hurt when I woke up the next day knowing we scored nothing and we could have, at worst, been fifth. It is what it is.”
He also said he hopes that the three weeks between Malaysia and China will hopefully give the team time to develop the car.
“We’ve got to move on and look forward to China. I just wish it wasn’t around three weeks away. In a way, though, that’s good because it gives us extra time to work on the car. For us the gap means more than it does to most teams because it gives us time to perfect the car. I am a very happy driver at the moment knowing we have improved so much. And I know what the team can achieve over the next few weeks to take a strong car to in China.