“It’s sad to see a downcast Jenson on TV, but he knows he’s got what it takes and the car hasn’t, so it’s no surprise”
I’ve seen drivers come and I’ve seen them go since Formula 1 began in 1950 – and there’s not one of them that I’ve had more respect and liking for than Jenson Button.
He’s a chip off the old block, the ‘old block’ being his father John who I knew and liked immensely long before I was aware of his son. It’s from John that Jenson gets his racing genes: John was a top rallycross driver in the 1970s and many was the Button Sr drama I commentated on as he raced the wheels off his VW Beetle. Jenson would be the first to acknowledge that if it wasn’t for his father’s support, he wouldn’t be where he is now. For John was the ideal racing dad, drumming up the money, working on the cars and always there for his boy. His death this year broke a great and endearing partnership.
With Jenson, what you see is what you get. On TV he comes across as courteous, friendly, cheerful, immensely sensible and totally free of self-importance and ego. Off the box he is all of these things as I discovered during three great years as Honda’s F1 Ambassador from 2006 to 2008. Part of my remit was to interview Jenson