Button Frustrated By Team Error Causing Retirement
Jenson Button has confirmed that it was an error by the team that led him to retire from the Monaco Grand Prix yesterday.
The British driver, in his first season with McLaren stopped only a handful of laps into the Grand Prix, which he won in 2009, with an overheating engine. It was caused by a cover being left over the left sidepod during the lap from the pits to the grid ahead of the race. This caused the engine to reach high temperatures that it should not be exposed to so early in the Grand Prix. While touring behind the safety car early on, a lack of cooling caused the engine to overheat and Button had to retire.
He was disappointed too for the mechanic responsible, and said he would help try and iron out these issues.
“It is disappointing for everyone in the team and for the person responsible,” Button said. “I know these things happen but it is just hard to accept when it does. Obviously he is devastated. When you are trying to do your best and you make a mistake it is devastating.
“It is a cooling cover usually used in the garage or in transport. It was left in. The car went to the grid with no airflow and was cooked. You do what you can but you cannot recover from that. These cars don’t have fans, they rely on airflow, so if you deny that you are not going to survive very long.”
“It’s a mistake that you would think shouldn’t happen but it does. I’m sure the guy who did not pull it out is gutted. I feel sorry for the guy. We all make mistakes. We just have to make sure we don’t make them again. It’s done now. Last week was annoying because I lost everything on the steering wheel. But this one was a race stopper.
” We thought everything was going to be okay, and it would probably have been fine if we hadn’t had a Safety Car. My car quickly began to overheat and I started losing engine power, so I turned the engine off pretty sharply because the last thing I wanted was to leave engine oil on the racing line.”