Jenson Button Eyes Rallycross Challenge


Jenson Button knows his Formula 1 career is probably approaching the end soon, he’s fourteen years in and it’s been five years since his championship winning year.

The last few years at McLaren haven’t been the smoothest for the British driver, a second place in the championship in 2011 is the nearest to the title he has been, while his last win was in 2012.

“It’s still a pretty cool job,” he said in a recent interview with The Express.

“The worst part is the interviews trying to explain why it’s not working. Out on the circuit or in with the engineers you are flat out working on set-up, trying to improve. You are heads down and its enjoyable. In the car it’s all right, too. It is just when you see the times that it hurts.

“I’ll stop when I’m not enjoying it any more and it might be because I’m driving a car that’s not quick enough in the future. Hopefully that won’t be the case. Hopefully I can end on a high.

Ending on a high might be an issue, five races in and it looks like it is going to be another tough year for the McLaren as Mercedes continue to dominate the sport.

“I really do get bored easily with everything in life but it has not happened yet with this sport” he admits.

“But after this I will probably go and do rallycross. Have you seen it? It’s awesome, mega and there is a team in America which has VW Beetles. Dad used to race them, so that would be cool. That has got massive, it’s pure racing.”

His father, John Button raced in rallycross in the 70’s and was  runner-up in the 1976 Embassy/RAC-MSA British Rallycross and TEAC/Lydden Rallycross championships.

Rallycross is enjoying a rising profile, with many extreme sports stars such as Travis Pastrana and Bucky Lasek,  making the switch to the four-wheeled action sport. Other high-profile drivers making a switch include 2003 World Rally Champion Petter Solberg, 1997 Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve and American race driver/stunt driver/Top Gear host Tanner Foust.

“I saw a quote from Jacques saying that in every other sport they are trying to make the cars slower but in rallycross they just throw everything at it, they are 600bhp monsters.

“I want to do something like that, taking a little motorhome or caravan with my mates and family and just hang out with other guys who are just having fun. Just go and drive because you love driving. It’s very pure, like karting.”