(Motorsport-Total.com) – Soon seven titles and meanwhile more victories than Michael Schumacher: But that doesn’t have to end for Lewis Hamilton, believes Jenson Button. The Brit sees his former team-mate achieving even more successes if he doesn’t get a team-mate on his side who can stop him. From Button’s point of view, Valtteri Bottas cannot do that.
The Finn has been driving for four Years at the side of Hamilton at Mercedes. He could never be dangerous to his teammate. Also 2016 the victory balance with nine to two is clearly per Hamilton. “He may be close in qualifying and sometimes beat him, but in terms of race pace he is not even close to him this year,” said Button to ‘Motorsport-Total.com’.
But if Hamilton had a team-mate like Max Verstappen next to him, then we would see another Lewis, Button is sure. “He must have this challenge, otherwise he will just continue as before and will continue to win championships”, said the world champion of 2009.
Button is one of only two drivers to beat Lewis Hamilton over an entire season. In his three years together at McLaren, the Briton even scored more points than his compatriot. Only Nico Rosberg could 2014 with his world title also a team duel win.
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When it comes to who could beat Hamilton within the team, he can currently only think of three drivers: Max Verstappen, Charles Leclerc and Daniel Ricciardo. Even a George Russell is not yet ready to take on Hamilton. The others would be, according to Button.
Above all Daniel Ricciardo would like to see Button next to Hamilton, because the Australian would offer a special challenge: “He would hurt Lewis psychologically enormously,” he says. “He’d be quick and laugh everything away. He’d be so relaxed and down to earth. He’s a real character and I know that most pilots would find that difficult.”
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Currently, and Button is under no illusions but there is no reason for Mercedes to change anything. The crew has won all titles since 2014 and done everything right . “You can’t blame them, because it’s easier when you have someone who is faster than the other.”
“You can only say that he (Hamilton; editor’s note) . Pink.) Did the best possible job, and the crew did a fantastic job too, “said Button. “You are still unbeaten in the hybrid era.”