|© AP Photo/John Donegan
Jenson Button provided insights into how difficult the disruptive qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix on Saturday was, adding that the conditions were too dangerous to run in.
Heavy rains lashed the AlbertPark circuit delaying qualifying on several occasions until the fading light forced the governing body to reschedule the rest of the session on Sunday.
“For us drivers, it means we have to build ourselves up for the challenge of qualifying again and again – a bit like asking Usain Bolt to get ready for five 100-metre sprints one after the other and aborting four of them,” Button said referring to the stop-start session.
“That level of disruption creates quite a lot of mental and psychological stress for any athlete,” he explained.
The second session of qualifying will begin at 11 a.m. local time (0000 GMT) Sunday, making it a long day for teams and drivers with the race set to start six hours later.
“This means that I won’t now be able to go for coffee on the beach, which is my traditional pre-race routine here in Melbourne,” the McLaren driver said.
"But, you know, maybe that’s not such a bad thing, because it means I’ll be able to keep my Sunday morning Melbourne coffee as a lucky charm, since I don’t think we’ll be quick enough to win here, so my coffee-then-win record here will remain intact,” he added.
Button was certain that aquaplaning would have been inevitable no matter what the speeds would have been, pointing out that the tyre can only deal with a certain amount of water.
“When it is this wet out there there’s no difference between the rivers and the circuit, it’s just one big lake,” he was quoted by journalist Adam Cooper on his blog. “When you hit a river, you are completely out of control. You might as well close your eyes and take your hands off the steering wheel, because it does what it wants.
“And that’s not what F1 racing is about. It’s about a guy trying to tame a 750bhp F1 car, but in conditions where he can possibly tame it, because in this you can’t,” he continued. “The fans will get a much better show tomorrow than if we tried to run in these conditions, because we’d all be piled up at Turn 1.”
“It’s not about the show when it’s like this, this is way too dangerous,” he insisted.