Jenson Button’s first question to McLaren: “Is this Lewis’ team?”

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2009 Formula 1 champion Jenson Button says his first question to McLaren after he joined the team in 2010 was: “Is this Lewis’ team?”

After spectacularly winning the 2009 championship with Brawn GP Jenson Button decided to leave the team at the end of the year and join McLaren.

However, at the time McLaren was pretty much rallied around Lewis Hamilton, who started his career with the team in 2007 and won his first (and McLaren’s last) championship just a year later.

Button now reveals that the first thing he wanted to know when he came to McLaren was if he is going to receive equal treatment to Lewis.

“I remember walking into McLaren and the first thing I said before I met anyone,” started the Briton.

“I spoke to Martin Whitmarsh, I spoke to Ron Dennis and I said, ‘My first question is, is this Lewis’ team, am I going to have equal treatment here? Because if I’m not, I don’t want to be here’.

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“And they said, ‘yes, everything will be 100 per cent equal between both of the drivers’.

“I said ‘now I can start’ and then I walked in, met everyone, and got a pretty good rapport with the team very quickly.

“My dad would walk in. He was always in the background. He would speak to the engineers.

“It was quite a cold atmosphere and he made it a lot more friendly. And you know my manager was great, my physio, my PR man.

“I think it just made everyone a bit more relaxed in the team and drivers weren’t these alien people that you can’t talk to within a team,” concluded Button.

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