Skip to content

Jenson Button plays down impact of upgrades

May 3, 2013, 5:00 PM EDT

AUTO-PRIX-F1-BAHRAIN-QUALIFIER Getty Images

Jenson Button has played down the impact of McLaren’s upgrades for the MP4-28, which will debut at next weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix.

The team has made a poor start to the season, scoring just 23 points from the opening four rounds as the new car has struggled to make much of an impact. With the race in Barcelona heralding the first major set of upgrades for the teams, many expect it to mark a turning point in McLaren’s season, but 2009 world champion Button is not expecting miracles from the new parts.

“It’s been difficult for the team to make consistent progress through the first four races, but I think returning to a circuit where we undertook two of the pre-season tests will give us a useful benchmark of our progress so far,” Button said in a team statement.

“There’s been a lot of talk about the importance of next weekend’s upgrades; but, as with every upgrade, they’re simply part of the series of continuous improvement that are made across the season.”

Subsequently, Button has acknowledged that the parts could fail, and the MP4-28 may take even longer to fix.

“As always, there’ll be elements of it that work, elements that perhaps work in a different way to what we’d anticipated, and elements that don’t work, or perhaps require further work. That’s life in modern Formula 1.

“So I’m pragmatic about what we’ll discover next weekend. Of course, I’m hopeful that it’ll move us a step closer towards the destination.”

Button’s comments will not please many McLaren fans who may have been hoping for the British team to get its championship charge back on track for 2013. However, should he be proven wrong, McLaren could be on course to better its haul of nine points from the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Latest Posts
  1. Aleshin conscious following heavy accident in MAVTV 500 final practice

    Aug 29, 2014, 10:52 PM EDT

    AleshinSunIMS Getty Images

    Severe looking three-car accident affects Mikhail Aleshin and two others.

  2. Kevin Harvick wins Atlanta Sprint Cup pole; Stewart qualifies 12th

    Aug 29, 2014, 8:45 PM EDT

    Oral-B USA 500 - Practice Getty Images

    Harvick earns his sixth Sprint Cup pole of 2014 with the help of some advice from returning boss and teammate Tony Stewart.

  3. Castroneves secures crucial MAVTV 500 pole; Power starts P21 for IndyCar finale (VIDEO)

    Aug 29, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

    MAVTV 500 Ð Day 1 Getty Images

    Helio Castroneves on pole; Will Power struggles to P21 for Verizon IndyCar Series qualifying.

  4. NASCAR: Chris Buescher, Matt Kenseth lead Nationwide practices at Atlanta

    Aug 29, 2014, 7:29 PM EDT

    Great Clips 300 - Practice Getty Images

    The Nationwide Series rookie and Sprint Cup regular top today’s two practice sessions ahead of tomorrow night’s Great Clips 300 benefiting Feed The Children.

  5. Jeff Gordon: Last 3 races weren’t the same without Tony Stewart

    Aug 29, 2014, 7:06 PM EDT

    (Photo: Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR Getty Images

    HAMPTON, Ga. — According to Jeff Gordon, the last three Sprint Cup races just weren’t quite the same without Tony Stewart. Gordon is glad Stewart is back.

  6. NASCAR AMERICA: Drivers discuss Stewart’s return (VIDEO)

    Aug 29, 2014, 7:00 PM EDT

    Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick AP

    Danica Patrick, Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon, Greg Biffle, Ryan Newman, and Brian Vickers share their thoughts on Tony Stewart getting back behind the wheel in Atlanta.

  7. IndyCar has 500 miles to glory, through speed, dirt, tire fall off and unpredictability

    Aug 29, 2014, 6:45 PM EDT

    MAVTV 500 Getty Images

    The 500-mile shootout may be late Saturday night in Fontana, but still promises a bevy of story lines for the Verizon IndyCar Series season finale.

  8. NASCAR AMERICA: Mike Helton explains decision to make Stewart eligible for Chase (VIDEO)

    Aug 29, 2014, 6:25 PM EDT

    Pocono 400 - Practice Getty Images

    NBCSN contributor Nate Ryan also reports on the atmosphere around Tony Stewart’s return at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

  9. NASCAR AMERICA: Tony Stewart’s “healing process” (VIDEO)

    Aug 29, 2014, 6:02 PM EDT

    Tony Stewart AP

    “…[Stewart] being in the race car right now is about him getting through what has been a very emotional two weeks, and what his next step is in coping with this.” – Stewart Haas Racing’s Brett Frood

  10. Vickers: Last 2 races will be “a battle” for drivers not locked in Chase

    Aug 29, 2014, 5:41 PM EDT

    Oral-B USA 500 - Practice Getty Images

    Brian Vickers and other winless drivers are facing big-time pressure to get a victory in the final races of the regular season.

  11. PWC: New Porsche GT-Cup class introduced for 2015

    Aug 29, 2014, 5:30 PM EDT

    Photo: Pirelli World Challenge Photo: Pirelli World Challenge

    Porsche GT-Cup class class to enter into Pirelli World Challenge in 2015.

  12. WATCH LIVE: NASCAR AMERICA at 5 p.m. ET

    Aug 29, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

    NASCAR America

    Coming up today: More on the return of Tony Stewart at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

  13. Houston axed from 2015 IndyCar calendar; CTMP likely per report

    Aug 29, 2014, 4:45 PM EDT

    Shell Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston Getty Images

    Houston gone and momentum grows for Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, if a date can be found, for IndyCar.

  14. NASCAR: Tony Stewart 10th in first Cup practice at Atlanta; Edwards fastest

    Aug 29, 2014, 4:16 PM EDT

    Oral-B USA 500 - Practice Getty Images

    Following an emotional press conference this morning, the three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion got back to work.

  15. How NASCAR determined Tony Stewart was ready to race again

    Aug 29, 2014, 3:15 PM EDT

    (AP Photo/John Bazemore) AP

    HAMPTON, Ga. — Tony Stewart didn’t just wake up Friday morning and decide he was going to return to NASCAR racing. Rather, NASCAR officials required that Stewart followed procedures and protocols that included him being evaluated by outside professionals.

  16. Helton: Tony Stewart still eligible for Chase, but must win to get in

    Aug 29, 2014, 3:05 PM EDT

    helton atlanta 2014 -- 2 Getty Images

    HAMPTON, Ga. – Tony Stewart is still eligible to make this year’s Chase for the Sprint Cup, NASCAR president Mike Helton announced Friday afternoon at Atlanta Motor Speedway. But for that to happen, Stewart must win one of the next two races to get in.

  17. Full transcript of Mike Helton press conference at Atlanta

    Aug 29, 2014, 2:47 PM EDT

    (Photo: Jonathan Moore/Getty Images) Getty Images

    HAMPTON, Ga. — NASCAR president Mike Helton spoke with the media an hour after Tony Stewart read his self-prepared statement Friday afternoon at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

  18. Sheriff: Stewart crash investigation to continue “for at least another 2 weeks”

    Aug 29, 2014, 2:44 PM EDT

    Tony Stewart Getty Images

    Ontario County (N.Y.) Sheriff Philip Povero makes his first statement on the Tony Stewart/Kevin Ward Jr. crash investigation since Aug. 12.

  19. Kurt Busch, Danica Patrick glad to see boss, teammate and friend Tony Stewart back in race car

    Aug 29, 2014, 2:30 PM EDT

    (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack) AP

    HAMPTON, Ga. – Stewart-Haas Racing teammates Danica Patrick and Kurt Busch are fully in support of their boss, Tony Stewart, being back in a race car this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

  20. Full transcript of today’s Tony Stewart press conference

    Aug 29, 2014, 2:27 PM EDT

    Oral-B USA 500 - Practice Getty Images

    After reading from a prepared statement, Stewart left to prepare for Sprint Cup practice this afternoon. Stewart Haas Racing executive VP Brett Frood then took questions from the assembled media.

Video from NASCAR America

Inside Tony Stewart's return to racing
Top 10 NASCAR Driver Searches
  1. J. Gordon (2114)
  2. K. Busch (1738)
  3. K. Harvick (1634)
  4. J. Logano (1412)
  5. K. Larson (1232)