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Jenson Button Q&A: I know this could be my final Grand Prix

21 Nov 2014

After months of speculation, Jenson Button heads into the final round of the season with his future still unresolved.

But while that means Abu Dhabi could yet be the final act of a 15-year career in Formula One racing, the 2009 world champion insists he is relaxed about his situation, and excited about his prospects - wherever he ends up...

Q: Jenson, the fact McLaren won't make an announcement regarding their driver line-up before December 1 hasn't eased your situation. How are you going about that?

Jenson Button: Now it's fine. To be honest it was tricky before Japan - but it opens your eyes to different challenges and you suddenly start to understand that Formula One is not the only place. There are many exciting things out there - if I am not here next year. Right now I am enjoying my racing. My time in the car has always been the best thing for me about Formula One - and it still is. But it's also a fact that nowadays there is a bigger difference between out of the car and in the car than there used to be.

Q: There are many fans out there anxious to hear about your future…

JB: …probably more anxious than I am! I do get a lot of messages on social networks and some people seem to get pretty angry about my situation - but for me it is different. I am a very relaxed individual. Formula One is a great place to be - but there are also other things in life that are great challenges. I am going to enjoy this weekend, and then let's see what the future brings.

Q: Fernando Alonso was quoted yesterday as saying that if he does move to McLaren, he wants you to stay there…

JB: …I am not so sure he said that. But I have nothing to add to my whereabouts in 2015. All I know is that this is the last weekend of the year - and it might be the last F1 weekend for me.

Q: Are you ready to call it quits?

JB: If you'd asked me three months ago I'd say of course not - I've been here for 15 years! But in uncertain times you take the blinkers off and look at the other options.

Q: Since 2002 you've outscored all your team mates over the course of a season at least once - and there are some very prominent names amongst them! Do you understand why there are issues in finding a competitive cockpit for 2015?

JB: You don't have to tell me that. I know!

Q: Looking at the season - not only for yourself but also for the whole sport - what would be your summary?

JB: The sport has had highs and lows. Two massive lows: the biggest obviously the accident of Jules (Bianchi), and losing two teams - true Caterham is back for this weekend with funding from fans and sponsors, but will that really be substantial? But of course there have been a lot of positives as well: the racing has been great this year - great fights. But we all have to work together to make it a better sport. There is still a lot room for improvement.

Q: Should this be your farewell, can you name some of the most emotional moments from your long F1 career?

JB: First was Barcelona 15 years ago when Frank Williams sat down with me and told me I had a drive. It was a very emotional moment with my dad at the track and with my mum on the telephone. Since then there have been so many highs and lows. I am very lucky having been in this sport for so long - and found something that I am good at. But I am also working unbelievably hard: every race I do, I learn - and my guess is that there are not many drivers out there who have picked up as much as I have and still kept the hunger to want to race and succeed.

Q: And coming back to more recent times?

JB: Brazil two weeks ago was good. But despite what people might believe, there has been a lot of positive racing this year. Of course I've also had my share of frustration having been so close at times to that illusive podium, and not making it.

Q: If you look how things went today - was it a promising prelude to a possible farewell weekend?

JB: We had some issues in the first practice session - I only did eight laps. The afternoon was significantly better, but when you miss out so much running you have to catch-up - and that was pretty promising. But any prediction that you would risk on Friday mostly doesn't stand the reality of qualifying, so let's wait and see what happens tomorrow.

Q: Should you risk a view into a crystal ball, what other future is out there for you in racing? Didn't Mark Webber write that you should join him in endurance racing...

JB: I've had some good chats with people about racing in WEC. Who knows! It looks very interesting and you obviously give it a bit of a thought. I am not stupid. I want to race next year. I want to be in a category that is competitive. And yes, it could be an exciting challenge.

Q: Have you been contacted by teams?

JB: Maybe.