JENSON BUTTON insists his motivation is as strong as ever despite heading into Sunday’s British Grand Prix knowing he will be nothing more than an also-ran.
After a wretched 2007, Button’s woes at Honda have continued into the current campaign, managing only one points finish when he was sixth in Spain.
Yet Button remains convinced he is with the right team, now under the leadership of Ross Brawn, and they will deliver him a car in which he will again compete for the Formula One world title.
That is why his confidence is far from shot, as he said: “I love what I do, so I have no problems with motivation.
“It obviously isn’t nice knowing I’m going into the British Grand Prix without a realistic chance of battling at the front, but when I’m in the car I push 110%.
“That’s what I do every time I get in the car, and it’s what I have to do to drive the team forward and ahead of what will be a better year in 2009.
“I tell the team exactly how the car performs on the track, where it’s weak and where it’s strong.
“I’m actually working much harder now than I did in 2004, when I finished third in the world championship, because that’s what you have to do to get back to the front.
“I make sure the team are making the changes that need to be made.”
It would certainly appear the only way is up for Button and Honda, with the Englishman adding: “I’m only 28 years old, yet this is already my ninth year in F1 so I have the necessary experience to win the title.
“I haven’t got the car underneath me to do that at the moment, but that will come.”
At least Button is preparing for the day when it does come because while there might be a degree of mental anguish at present due to driving an uncompetitive car, physically he could not be fitter.
Button has started to compete in triathlons, finishing 16th out of 250 on his debut, the Sevenoaks Sprint Triathlon, which comprised a 400 metre swim, 27km bike ride and eight km run.
Recently Button was 117th out of 1,700 in the Windsor Triathlon, his first Olympic distance event that included a 1,500m swim, 43km bike and 10km run.
“I like the pain and I like pushing my body to the limit,” insisted Button.