• Malaysian Grand Prix

Button enjoys 'confusing' race

ESPNF1 Staff
April 10, 2011 « 'I couldn't be happier' - Vettel | »
Jenson Button finished second ahead of Nick Heidfeld's Renault © Getty Images

Jenson Button said that he found the race to be "really confusing" on his way to second place in the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Tyre degradation was much higher in Malaysia than in Australia, and all of the front runners completed at least three pitstops. Button ended the race 3.2 seconds behind winner Sebastian Vettel, and said that it wasn't until the last set of tyres that he felt he could set a really competitive pace.

"It was a really confusing race in a way, understanding or trying to understand the pitstops and whether it is worth looking after the tyres or not through the stints, so it was pretty tricky. In the last stint when we put the prime tyre on, the car came alive; I had so much more grip. I had a feeling the tyre wasn't going to go the same way as the soft tyre and my pace was much better in the last stint.

It was a fun race; I had a couple of really good battles. I'm happy to come away with the second. I had the team telling me to back it off and look after the tyres, but in a racer's mind you want to push and catch the leader. Even though it was not really on you've still got to give it a go, so I had a lot of fun out there and it's great to get 18 points."

Button said that the race had been a learning curve in terms of tyre wear, but that he was now confident that McLaren could take the fight to Red Bull once again at next weekend's Chinese Grand Prix.

"As we went through the race I think we understood the tyre a lot more and then our consistency was much better with the tyre, and we didn't get down to the canvas which was nice! So a big thank you to the whole team, they did a magnificent job today with the pitstops and the strategy. I think we have made some good progress. I'm looking forward to China - we can be excited and hopefully we can challenge these guys [Red Bull]."