sport

Button pushes retirement talk aside

Jenson Button has no intention of quitting Formula One just yet as he is determined to end his career on a high.

Button is fast approaching a crossroads, however, as his contract with McLaren expires at the end of this season.

At present the team are not competitive following a run of three successive races without scoring a point for the first time since 2009.

However, with Honda due to return as their power unit supplier from 2015, there is naturally considerable excitement and optimism within McLaren.

One of the great unknowns, though, is whether they will be quick out of the box, or whether it will take them at least a season or two to get up to speed.

With Button now 34, he is quickly running out of opportunities to win a second world championship, so does he stay - if offered a new deal - or go?

It is a tough dilemma for the Briton, but one certainty is he will not be calling time on F1 at the end of this season.

"I definitely want to be in F1. This sort of season does not make you want to retire," said Button.

"If you do retire, you want to retire on a high and if you have the possibility to do that, then you continue racing to get that high.

"The problem then is when you do that you don't want to stop racing either, so you could be racing for many years.

"But no, I don't feel I want to retire at the end of this year. I am happy about my future, and think it is quite exciting."

Now in his fifth season with McLaren, Button would naturally love to remain with a team he knows have the resources to get him back to the front.

But as he points out, there is one over-riding factor, adding: "The biggest problem is I need to be in a car that is competitive, that gives you confidence as a driver as well. I hope that's here.

"It is a difficult decision for a driver in my position, with so much experience and so much to give

"I'm at the point in my career where I've only a few years left where I will be in F1, and I want to be in a position where I can win races or be close to winning races.

"I would like to think I'll be here and the team will be competitive towards the end of this season, which will then give me good reason to want to be here."

Button also appreciates there are few top seats available, with no driver movement likely unless someone is axed or decides to quit.

It is why he feels it is imperative McLaren remain true to their word and they do turn their campaign around by building a fast car.

"We have to be quick towards the end of this year if we want to be quick next year because there are no regulation changes, so we have to stay focused," said Button.

"We are not suddenly going to find two seconds over the winter.

"I know Ron (Dennis, McLaren Group CEO) has said he wants to win races this year, but that is going to be very, very difficult.

"I know why he is saying it because he understands we have to be quicker this year if we've a chance of being quick next year.

"That's why there is a big push, and we won't let up like perhaps Mercedes will once they have a 300-point lead!"