Jenson Button felt he could have scored points for only the third time in 2015 in Singapore on Sunday, but was left disappointed with another early exit with a gearbox issue, although he was far from pleased with the actions of one of his fellow drivers.
The McLaren-Honda driver was unhappy with Pastor Maldonado after clashing with the Lotus F1 Team driver and breaking his front wing, but ultimately was downbeat because of his retirement, another DNF in a tough season for the team.
“We should have scored points today, and we would have scored points if I hadn’t had contact with Pastor [Maldonado] and we hadn’t had gearbox problems,” said Button.
“There’s lots of ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’, but the car felt alright to drive, which is a positive. We went very long on our stops, and I was able to look after the tyres well, which is always helpful, and the second Safety Car helped us.
”But it’s been a tough season. Everyone is feeling it, but it’s not slowing us down in terms of how much effort everyone is putting in, both in Woking and Sakura.
”So the team will now get their heads down and focus on the next race, in Japan. It’s Honda’s home circuit, but it’ll be another tough weekend. We’ll do our best.”
Button laid into Maldonado for the excessively defensive move that broke the Briton’s front wing and sent him into the pits for a replacement, and felt that the Venezuelan driver has never changed his driving style and is unlikely to do so now.
“I don’t think he brake-tested me on the exit, but he didn’t accelerate, so it was a bit of a surprise,” said Button. “It doesn’t really matter anyway because we wouldn’t have finished anyway.
“He was trying to block the inside line, so very strange. And the corner before that, he just drove me off the circuit. If there was a wall there I would have been in it. Very strange.
“He hasn’t changed and he won’t ever change.”