“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”

F1 Racing - - CHEQUERED FLAG -

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

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