Button wants qualifying improvement

Jenson Button knows he has to end his qualifying torment if he is to have any chance of retaining his Formula One title.

Not once in the 10 races this season has Button managed to start in the top three on the grid, appreciating that has then compromised his opportunities in the races.



Most notably, the reigning world champion has been out-qualified by McLaren team-mate Lewis Hamilton at the last six races, slumping to a dismal 14th on the grid 12 days ago at the British Grand Prix.



Remarkably, though, Button finds himself only 12 points adrift of championship leader Hamilton ahead of this Sunday's race at Hockenheim in Germany.



But the qualifying trend is one Button is determined to reverse.



"My most memorable experience at Hockenheim must be back in 2004," recalled Button.



"That was when I qualified 13th and raced through the field to finish second, so not too dissimilar to my race at Silverstone (where he finished fourth).



"But after two disappointments in qualifying at Valencia and Silverstone, my aim for this weekend must be to make life easier for myself on Saturday afternoon.



"If I do that then I can maximise my performance on Sunday without needing to play catch-up during the race."



Crucial to Button's hopes are McLaren's plans to re-introduce their version of the performance-enhancing exhaust blown diffuser.



After being trialled and ditched following Friday's two practice sessions at Silverstone, McLaren have spent the last week or so fine-tuning their design.



It will be aired and rigorously tested in tomorrow's two 90-minute practice runs, with a decision to be made after analysis as to whether they will continue with it throughout the weekend.



"It will be another busy weekend for all of us as we spend tomorrow working through the changes we've made to optimise the diffuser," added Button.



"Hopefully we'll have a positive test and we will be able to see the benefits of the upgrades in the race for the first time. I'm looking forward to it."



McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh, however, is cautious as to whether his team have managed to perfect the concept.



"You can't be entirely confident you've solved the issues," said Whitmarsh.



"But I think we go into Hockenheim with more information. We've made some modifications in light of the data and we will be running the blown diffuser tomorrow.



"I suspect we'll have it on for the weekend, but we'll make the call in the light of the data tomorrow evening."



Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

A Very British Coup, part two

New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms
What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist? Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories

What turns someone into a conspiracy theorist?

Study to look at why some are more 'receptive' to such theories
Chinese web dissenters using coded language to dodge censorship filters and vent frustration at government

Are you a 50-center?

Decoding the Chinese web dissenters
The Beatles film Help, released 50 years ago, signalled the birth of the 'metrosexual' man

Help signalled birth of 'metrosexual' man

The Beatles' moptop haircuts and dandified fashion introduced a new style for the modern Englishman, says Martin King
Hollywood's new diet: Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?

Hollywood's new diet trends

Has LA stolen New York's crown as the ultimate foodie trend-setter?
6 best recipe files

6 best recipe files

Get organised like a Bake Off champion and put all your show-stopping recipes in one place
Ashes 2015: Steven Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Finn goes from being unselectable to simply unplayable

Middlesex bowler claims Ashes hat-trick of Clarke, Voges and Marsh
Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... for the fourth time

Mullah Omar, creator of the Taliban, is dead... again

I was once told that intelligence services declare their enemies dead to provoke them into popping up their heads and revealing their location, says Robert Fisk
Margaret Attwood on climate change: 'Time is running out for our fragile, Goldilocks planet'

Margaret Atwood on climate change

The author looks back on what she wrote about oil in 2009, and reflects on how the conversation has changed in a mere six years
New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered: What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week

New Dr Seuss manuscript discovered

What Pet Should I Get? goes on sale this week
Oculus Rift and the lonely cartoon hedgehog who could become the first ever virtual reality movie star

The cartoon hedgehog leading the way into a whole new reality

Virtual reality is the 'next chapter' of entertainment. Tim Walker gives it a try
Ants have unique ability to switch between individual and collective action, says study

Secrets of ants' teamwork revealed

The insects have an almost unique ability to switch between individual and collective action
Donovan interview: The singer is releasing a greatest hits album to mark his 50th year in folk

Donovan marks his 50th year in folk

The singer tells Nick Duerden about receiving death threats, why the world is 'mentally ill', and how he can write a song about anything, from ecology to crumpets
Let's Race simulator: Ultra-realistic technology recreates thrill of the Formula One circuit

Simulator recreates thrill of F1 circuit

Rory Buckeridge gets behind the wheel and explains how it works