After having high hopes for turning their season around in Barcelona, McLaren instead finished outside of the Top 10 for the third consecutive race.
But in Jenson Button’s mind, things could’ve turned out better if not for problems during his second pit stop in last Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix.
Button was looking to crack the points during the race and opted to pit with Sergio Perez on his second stop in hopes of jumping Perez’s teammate, Nico Hulkenberg.
However, that plan went awry.
“During the first two stints, it felt like we were making progress, because we were faster than the cars in front,” Button said.
“But we gambled on taking the second stop early, thinking we could jump one of the Force Indias, but Daniil’s [Kvyat] Toro Rosso followed me in, and caused my release to be delayed by a few seconds while he came past me in the pit lane.”
Things didn’t get much better for the former World Champion when he finally got back on the track.
“Then I came out of the pits just in front of [race winner] Lewis [Hamilton], who was lapping me,” Button said. “He was running old tires, while I was on fresh rubber; I had to let him past, but it delayed me a bit more.”
Things remain relatively tight in the Formula One pack, particularly in fourth through sixth in the Constructors’ Championship. P4 belongs to Force India with 57 points, followed by Williams with 46, and then McLaren with 43.
With that in mind, Button is looking forward to getting further development in during a two-day test session at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, which begins tomorrow.
“The test should be useful – not necessarily for [the next race at] Monaco, but for two or three races down the road,” he said. “The midfield is extremely close, so even small improvements will make a difference.”