“We Played a Lot of Games” – Jenson Button Recalls Cunning Tricks Pulled by Fernando Alonso

Published 10/21/2021, 12:30 PM EDT


When a conversation around Fernando Alonso comes up, most of the F1 fraternity often speak highly of him. During his glittering F1 career, the Spaniard shared the paddock with some highly talented teammates. One of them was Jenson Button, who he raced alongside for McLaren for two seasons.

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Recently, the Briton shared a virtual interaction with another F1 world champion, Nico Rosberg. When asked about Alonso, Button recalled a trick the Spaniard would pull when they raced as teammates.

Jenson Button recalls comical tactic which Fernando Alonso used

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Like Alonso, Button is among the most experienced F1 drivers in the sport’s history. Although the Briton started his F1 journey a year before the Spaniard, he won just one world title with Brawn in 2009. While it took them over a decade to become teammates, the pair often speak kindly about each other.

During his interaction with Rosberg on the German’s YouTube podcast, Button mentioned how Alonso would play games even if McLaren weren’t very competitive during their time as teammates.

He said“Fernando would play games. Which, in a way, I was at a point in my career that was up for games. We were so slow, that we were fighting against each other, and we played a lot of games.”

While mentioning those games mostly involved hiding things, the 41-year-old mentioned how Alonso would threaten retiring from the race if he trailed Button. “Most of the time, it was more of just holding back things,” he said. “Holding back pace, holding back information about setups and what have you.

“There are other times actually if he was behind me, he would say, ‘Oh, there’s a problem with the car,’ and he would retire from the race!”

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Button: We definitely respected each other

While they shared great moments together, Button admitted they had massive respect for the other. He also mentioned Alonso’s innate ability to extract the most from a car, no matter the circumstances.

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Formula One F1 – Steiermark Grand Prix – Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Austria – June 24, 2021 Alpine’s Fernando Alonso during the press conference Pool via REUTERS/Christian Bruna

“We understood each other and we definitely respected each other,” said Button. “We knew that when we did things, the other guy could take it. 

“So, I respected Fernando for that. Even if Fernando wasn’t quick over a race weekend, he could still get a result. If he couldn’t quite find the balance that worked for him, there was a way he would always get the best out of the car.”

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With Alonso guaranteed to compete next season, he will look to finish the ongoing F1 season on a high. He has 58 points so far, and would look to add to that tally this weekend in Austin.

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Sanket Nair

876 articles

Sanket Nair is an F1 & US Sports Author at EssentiallySports. He began following F1 since 2010, which made him an instant Sebastian Vettel fan. His favorite tracks on the calendar include Spa-Francorchamps, Monaco and Monza.

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