The Inside Line - on McLarens Jenson Button 29 Jun 2012
From young hotshot to established veteran, Jenson Buttons 13 years in the F1 paddock have garnered him one world championship, 13 victories, seven pole positions and 860 points. But what of the mindset behind the man? We dug a little deeper and found out that Briton Button loves the smell of chain oil and the taste of banoffee pie, cant bear doing the laundry, and associates home - where hell be racing next weekend - with a lovely cuppa
Q: What keeps you awake at night?
Jenson Button: When my girlfriend kicks me a bit in her sleep because shes quite restless. (laughs) Thats a joke. The truth is that I struggle to sleep. I move around a lot when I sleep - and I think a lot in my sleep.
Q If you could banish one thing from your life - for the rest of your life - what would that be?
JB: Washing my clothes. I do that, yes! I hate ironing as well. We do have a cleaning person, but I also do it once in a while - and I dislike it.
Q: Whats been your most valuable life lesson?
JB: When times are tough, always keep fighting. It is never over until it is over.
Q: What do you admire?
JB: People who care for others and take the feelings of other people into consideration. But also people who do well in their field - like Rafael Nadal, or someone in business - who are doing things in the right way.
Q: If you could give your younger self some advice what would it be?
JB: Probably to understand contracts a bit better in my Honda/Williams days and to take more time choosing my manager. (laughs) Ive found the right one now, but it took me a long time.
Q: If your racing career ended after this season what would you do with the rest of your life?
JB: I would love to still be involved with motorsport, to manage a driver and be involved in a drivers career. I have a lot to give - a lot of experience, good and bad. And as I am massively into triathlons, another thing to do would be to qualify for the world championship in triathlon. That is a big aim of mine in life. That is something that I definitely will try to do.
Q: What animal best reflects your personality?
JB: Oh, that is difficult. I wouldnt be a cat, thats for sure. Cats are good on their own, they are loners, whereas I like having people around me. I was at Ascot recently and heard that horses have pet friends - they have sheep or goats as friends when they are in the stables - so Id be a horse. Why not?
Q: What is more important in life than winning?
Q: What would you spend your last dollar on?
JB: A good gravestone. Hopefully.
Q: What is your greatest weakness?
JB: Thinking about issues too much. When I have a problem I try to think about it and then put it to the back of my mind - or throw it away completely - but it is very difficult. I go over things too much. How do I hide that from the world? I dont know - its tricky - but experience gets you there.
Q: What is your favourite smell?
JB: It goes back to my karting days and its probably chain oil. I have great memories of those old days of karting.
Q: Whats your ultimate comfort food?
JB: I have a really sweet tooth so I would go for banoffee pie - something like that. I love souffles too - a proper French souffle is amazing.
Q: Whats the first thing you do when you get home after a race?
JB: Go for dinner with friend or have a beer.
Q: What scares you?
JB: Failure, probably. But then I dont really think that I am scared of that. Not anymore. (laughs)
Q: What tastes like home?
JB: English breakfast tea.
Q: When were you happiest?
JB: I am always very happy on the top spot of the podium. That is something I work so hard for. That is it in working terms. In my private life, I think being with close family and friends. Being on the boat together with close friends. Or my girlfriend and I in Japan, in a Japanese-style hotel, eating Japanese food and wearing kimonos
Q: Whats the best advice you have been given?
JB: I dont know really. There have been so many things that shaped me, so I would not put it down to one thing.
Q: Are you the man you always thought you would become?
JB: I never thought so far into the future, especially as a kid.
Q: What event cant you forget but wish you could?
JB: Probably the 2012 Canadian Grand Prix.
Q: If you had to stay in one place for the rest of your life, where would it be?
JB: I still dont know that one. I love so many places. I love Japan, I love the south of France, I love Monaco, and I love Hawaii. I would probably choose from one of those.
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