Button: Whitmarsh still the man

Wednesday 19-June-2013 07:59

Jenson Button insists that McLaren are united in their support for Martin Whitmarsh, and is backing him to turn the Woking outfit's fortunes around.

McLaren had precious little to smile about during their last outing in Canada, and were powerless to stop their run of 64 consecutive points scoring finishes coming to an end.

The pressure had already starting mounting on Whitmarsh prior to that showing, with questions about whether he was considering resigning emerging at the Spanish GP.

Whatever small steps McLaren seemed to be taking in bettering their MP4-28 in the early rounds of the season, there has been precious little evidence of improvement in recent weeks.

Despite these troubles, Button has thrown his support squarely behind Whitmarsh.

Asked by Sky Sports News during an appearance at Silverstone if everyone at Woking remained united behind Whitmarsh, Button replied: "As far as I know everyone's united, yes.

"Martin's is a really good leader and he's a proper human being as well. He's a guy that you can trust, you can believe in. I feel that everyone at the factory, all the people I speak to when I'm there feel exactly the same.

"It's so difficult for a Team Principal when a team that normally wins grands prix suddenly isn't winning grands prix, but I think he is the best leader to bring us through this difficult time."

Button remains hopeful of giving fans a reason to be proud at Silverstone next week, and while he isn't predicting any kind of miraculous turnaround, he does believe the high-speed nature of Silverstone will be more condusive to a stronger McLaren performance.

"There are many things a driver needs to be good at here, but he also needs to be working with a good team and driving a good car," he said.

"With us, this grand prix is going to be a difficult one. But I think we'll be stronger here than the previous races because it is a fast flowing circuit.

"I think we do have OK downforce, but the problem for us has been the ride quality of the car.

"There is a massive amount of movement of the car which really hurts the airflow and hurts the aerodynamics. Here it shouldn't be so much of problem, except for Turn 1 [Abbey] which is going to be a little tricky for us."

Despite all the challenges McLaren are facing, Button is still looking forward to his home grand prix, as he does every year.

"Even in the difficult times, that are much worse than now, I still love coming to Silverstone because of the support you get from the crowd," he told AUTOSPORT.

"I remember going on stage back in 2008 when we were really poor [with Honda], and still I received massive support, which was really nice and that really helped me for the rest of the season.

"I'm looking forward to racing here and hopefully seeing a full house. We will fight and do the best we can.

"It's going to be very difficult [to get] even a podium, but the most important thing for us is to get the best out of what we have.

"Hopefully that will be enough for the fans we want to do so well for, because they've been so supportive."

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