Whitmarsh: Jenson has shown what he can do
Martin Whitmarsh insists Jenson Button has shown his detractors wrong following his move to McLaren
McLaren team boss Martin Whitmarsh says that Jenson Button has proved a point to those who underestimated him prior to his move to the Woking-based team.
Button switched to McLaren as the defending F1 champion having taken the crown with Brawn GP back in 2009, putting himself up against fellow Brit Lewis Hamilton.
At the time, many questioned Button's decision to go head-to-head with Hamilton, especially given the way in which Fernando Alonso's tenure with the team came to an early end after he went up against the Brit back in 2007.
However, speaking in a Vodafone McLaren Mercedes phone-in, Whitmarsh said that Button had shown his decision to be the correct one, with his two drivers bringing the best out of each other both on and off track.
"I am delighted with both of our drivers," he said, when asked his happy he was with Button as his first signing as McLaren team boss. "I've known Lewis since he was 11 years old. A lot of people underestimated Jenson. A lot of people thought he was making a mistake to pitch himself head-to-head against Lewis and he has done an outstanding job. The whole team are delighted we have signed a multi-year contract with him. He's very polite, he's relaxed in himself and I think that deceives people into believing he's not hungry for success.
"But in our team - and with a tough team mate like Lewis - he's been able to demonstrate his skills. It's been great for the sport seeing the pair racing each other and really wanting to beat each other. And out of the car, and within the team, they work incredibly well together. It could be perceived as team spin but they really do get on with each other.
"They have different priorities in how they go racing, but they are both great drivers, they both want to win and they will have another great contest next year."