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Button back to his best - McLaren

ESPN Staff
July 24, 2012 « Mercedes 0.5s off the pace - Haug | Force India ready for 'big fight' - Mallya »
Jenson Button returned to the podium for the first time since April © Press Association
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McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh said Jenson Button proved his critics wrong by bouncing back from a poor run of form with a podium at the German Grand Prix.

Before Hockenheim, Button had looked out of sorts since the Spanish Grand Prix after struggling to get heat into his tyres and then following several unsuccessful set-up choices to try to compensate. His podium at Hockenheim was his first since the Chinese Grand Prix in April and Whitmarsh believes it is proof that he is back as regular contender for race wins.

"I think the car's a bit quicker, the tyres are working and he is capable of being as quick of anyone," Whitmarsh said. "In the end his tyres were fairly worn, he'd pushed quite hard, but it was encouraging. For him, he silenced a few of his critics and I'm sure he'll be focused on the coming races."

McLaren sporting director Sam Michael said Button had rediscovered his form a couple of races ago but struggled to prove it due to the pace of the car relative to its competitors.

"He has been back for a couple of races but because of other circumstances he hasn't shown that. As I've always said through that period of time, we fully support him and he's not a world champion for nothing. We need him on days like today [Sunday] when he drove like he did. He's back, I'm sure.

"Our main focus is to have both cars up the front of the grid at Budapest and win the grand prix. Our target is still to win this world championship. We're behind at the moment but we're hell bent on catching up very quickly."