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Button aims to close the gap

Friday 18-April-2014 10:50

Jenson Button is hoping McLaren will have better race-pace this weekend in Shanghai after "some positive steps."

The McLaren driver, who won the Chinese Grand Prix in his first season with the Woking team, finished eighth quickest in Friday's practice.

Clocking a 1:39.491, Button was just over a second slower than former team-mate and Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton.

"In terms of driveability, I think we've improved the car in a number of areas since Bahrain," he stated.

"There are a few more things we can do overnight, and there are some positive steps we can take to move a little closer to the front.

"After all, two weeks ago, in Bahrain, we also struggled during our long runs in FP2, so perhaps we'll be better in the race here."

But, like his rivals, Button had to contend with severe graining on his longer runs especially on the soft Pirelli tyres.

The 2009 Champion, though, is confident that in finding a better set-up he can ease the problem.

"Today, both my front tyres were graining - but then this place is very tough on front tyres, especially when you're in traffic.

"There are a few things we can do with the set-up to ease the graining - and there are also a few things we want to do that will improve the car's overall balance - so hopefully we'll get a clearer picture tomorrow of where we stand - if it stays dry."

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