By Alex Kapadia
Jenson Button has urged Formula One bosses to listen to drivers ahead of Australia Grand Prix this weekend.
The world champion admits that this season’s rule changes – including a ban on in-race refuelling and narrower front tyres – have backfired spectacularly, with overtaking next to impossible in Bahrain.
And the McLaren racer believes that drivers should be consulted on how to improve the racing in Formula One or this Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix could prove as boring as Bahrain 10 days ago.
Speaking in Melbourne, on his first return to the Albert Park circuit since his emotional win on Brawn GP’s debut 12 months ago, Button said the powers-that-be should listen to those in control of the cars.
Button said: “The drivers have a good understanding of what the car is doing on the circuit and what the possibilities are of improving the car.
“We know what we need to overtake and the thing is this season we have taken away a lot of mechanical grip with going to a narrow front tyre. At the same time we have more downforce on the car than we had last year.
“The problem is when you come up behind someone, you lose that downforce and you don’t have the mechanical grip you had last year to follow.
“It is a very tricky situation and I hope it is different here. But if you look at it, you’d say it is going to be the same as Bahrain.”
Button has suggested that “smaller” brakes, less fuel and more mechanical grip would spice up the show, but added that the sport needs to give it a couple more races before making any rash decisions.
“Let’s not get too carried away, but if the next two races are also not very exciting, then we as F1 need to look at the options and that’s not just pointing a finger at one or two people,” Button said.
“We all need to have ideas and hopefully we [the drivers] are listened to and we can improve the sport.”