Excitement builds for Jenson Button ahead of 2013 Formula 1 season
Jenson Button is eager to get behind the wheel of his new Vodafone McLaren Mercedes car as he prepares for the 2013 Formula 1 season.
The Frome Flyer, who turned 33 last Saturday says the pre-season testing period is one of the favourite parts of his year.
And with a greater degree of continuity in the rules, Button hopes he can start this season the same way he finished 2012 – with a victory.
"I've never, ever lost that feeling of excitement and anticipation ahead of a new season," he said.
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"And testing the new car is always such an adventure, because it's such a dense and complicated procedure.
"Testing is where you see a racing driver at the opposite end of the spectrum to when we're in a grand prix – it's never really about raw speed; it's about process, repetition, repeatability, about following your instincts but backing it up with good engineering.
"It's an absolutely fascinating process and you can see the fruits of your labour unfolding before your eyes, day after day. It's a part of the job that I really enjoy.
"I think all the teams will go into this season feeling more assured about the Pirelli tyres. Last year was a bit of an unknown as we all got to grips with the new rubber, but that's less likely to happen this time around, so there's more stability there.
"There are differences to the tyres – the shape and the compounds, but I don't think they'll be as fundamental to the overall car performance as they were last year.
"In terms of regulations, there is some stability, so I expect most teams will have continued to refine their car package over the winter.
"It's always really interesting to see how the cars develop during a period of rules stability, because you watch the progress from year to year as the engineers refine and improve their thinking and ideas."
The 2013 Formula 1 season begins with the Australian Grand Prix Sunday, March 17.