• Indian Grand Prix - Qualifying

Button bemoans 'disaster qualifying'

ESPNF1 Staff
October 29, 2011 « Pole position not as important - Alonso | No good vibrations for Schumacher in India »
Jenson Button wants to make changes to find a better balance in the McLaren © Getty Images

Jenson Button labelled his qualifying "a disaster" after qualifying fifth for the Indian Grand Prix.

Button will be promoted to fourth because of a three-place grid penalty for team-mate Lewis Hamilton, but he was 0.8s slower than pole sitter Sebastian Vettel after having to back off during part of his flying lap. Having also struggled to get through Q1 and used a set of soft tyres to do so, Button told the BBC that he wasn't happy with the balance of his car.

"No not at all," Button said. "This morning the car felt great, the pace was good and the car just felt good. And this afternoon I just couldn't find any grip ... on the hard tyre I couldn't find any grip and on the soft tyre the same. I didn't really get a clear lap either on either of my soft tyre runs; the traffic's been terrible out there. I think because the tyres aren't working on the first lap people are trying it and then backing out of it so there's cars everywhere."

"At the moment I've got to work out why I can't find a balance, and then hopefully we'll have a better race than qualifying because it was a disaster qualifying really. The car felt good on the high fuel yesterday so I'm hoping that we have that balance tomorrow."

Although benefiting from grid penalties tomorrow, Button admitted that he hoped he wouldn't receive one of his own having been following Felipe Massa when he crashed at the end of Q3, but still going on to set his quickest time.

"He was heading in to the gravel I think as I was coming up to it. I saw the tyre marks, I saw the smoke and then I saw the yellow flag, but I was actually in the yellow flag zone already so we'll see what happens. But I backed off, and I hope it's enough."