Jenson Button struggled to match Sebastian Vettel once he switched to soft tyres © Sutton Images

Jenson Button cited a poor balance on the soft tyre for his inability to challenge Sebastian Vettel for victory in the Singapore Grand Prix.

Having dropped over six seconds behind Vettel in the opening laps, Button then closed in rapidly towards the first round of pit stops to be less than two seconds behind the Red Bull. Having stayed out four laps longer on the supersoft tyre, Button appeared to be in a strong position strategically but the pace of Vettel on fresh soft tyres saw him rejoin a long way adrift.

Button admitted that the strategy decision wasn't the right one, and that the car's balance on the soft tyres was not good enough for him to pressurise Vettel late in the race.

"The pace on the supersoft was good, I could look after the tyres pretty well; not that it did me any good anyway because after the pit stops they had a gap because they went to new tyres earlier than me so it didn't really work out," Button said. "On the harder of the two tyres the balance wasn't as good and I couldn't really look after the tyres and degradation was reasonably high.

"It would have been nicer to have pushed Sebastian a bit harder; you never know around a street circuit when you push someone hard so there was always the possibility that we could do one step better but it wasn't to be. Sebastian didn't make any mistakes and we came away with a second, so reasonably good points and nice to get some points back on the board after the DNF in Monza."

However, Button said he was pleased to be competitive on another different type of circuit despite Hamilton's failure.

"It does (make up for Monza) but for us as a team to have another failure here this weekend is disappointing. But the important thing for us is we have a very good car. The team are doing a fantastic job and it seems that every race we go to we really do have a chance of winning so that's important to us."