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McLaren: We are about winning races....

McLaren MD Jonathan Neale has confirmed that there will be no team orders to favour either Jenson Button or Lewis Hamilton despite the points gap to Sebastian Vettel.

They collided on the opening lap of the Hungarian Grand Prix, and then duelled for the lead after a rain shower hit the Hungaroring, but McLaren insists that there are no plans to stop Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button fighting on track.

The two Britons have both been allowed to chase victories this season, with the notable collision between them in Canada providing a warning as to the potential dangers of doing so, but McLaren's top brass insists that it will not impose team orders on either man - even if it means that Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull Racing are allowed to stroll to the 2011 F1 world titles.

Button's victory in Hungary - in his 200th grand prix start - served only to bring him to within 100 points of runaway championship leader Vettel, while Hamilton sits two places and twelve points ahead of his team-mate, in third overall, after having to settle for fourth on the road in Budapest, the legacy of a spin, a botched tyre call and subsequent drive-thru' penalty.

However, while McLaren appears to have had the upper hand over Red Bull in recent races - the Milton Keynes team has not won for three rounds, while McLaren has claimed three of the last five - and still has time to derail its rival's championship charge, managing director Jonathan Neale insists that it is not about to hand one of its drivers an advantage by shackling his team-mate.

“We are not about to compromise our values and what we believe with our racing at McLaren,” he told journalists after the Hungarian success, “A number of teams have made the observation that we make championships harder for ourselves but we are about winning races, [and] I believe Lewis and Jenson are both driving better as a result of having each other in the team and being allowed to run like that.

“Lewis responds well to having somebody pressurise him, because he finds that extra bit digging deeper - and he knows that, if he puts a foot wrong or makes a mistake, Jenson is going to be right there. To win in F1, you need both drivers to be really hungry and you have to let them go sometimes."

Neale admitted that the ploy did not always work, despite Button winning in Montreal, but said that he would not expect the team to adopt the sort of team orders already employed by Red Bull at Silverstone, where Mark Webber was told to 'hold position' behind a slower Vettel.

“When we were in Canada, we let them get on with it and had a coming together, [so] it's risky," Neale conceded, "But, when you have back-to-back world champions, you have to respect they are the ones there in the moment. Everybody has to run their team by their rules but, if you look back through our history, that is the way that we go about racing. We are still in entertainment and it's important that we do that for the fans.”

Despite the obvious excitement for the fans, Neale admitted that watching Button and Hamilton duelling so intensely was not so comfortable for the team.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
10.07.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 leads Mark Webber (AUS), Red Bull Racing, RB7
12.06.2011- Race, Crash, Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren  Mercedes, MP4-26
07.05.2011- Jenson Button (GBR), McLaren  Mercedes, MP4-26 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren  Mercedes, MP4-26
31.07.2011 Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-26 and Jenson Button (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-26
Daniel Ricciardo - Red Bull Racing
Lewis Hamilton - Mercedes
24.05.2015- Race, William Stevens (GBR) Manor Marussia F1 Team
24.05.2015- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06
24.05.2015- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30 out of the race
24.05.2015- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T
24.05.2015- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30 is burning after the stop
24.05.2015- Race, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Honda MP4-30
24.05.2015- Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR10 crash after a contact with Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23 in St. Devote corner
24.05.2015- Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR10 crash after a contact with Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23 in St. Devote corner
24.05.2015- Race, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Red Bull Racing RB11
24.05.2015- Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM08
24.05.2015- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30 is burning after the stop
24.05.2015- After Race official Fia Press Conference, winner Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W06, 2nd Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T, 3rd Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06

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sanky - Unregistered

August 02, 2011 9:42 AM

Yup ...tats the reason I love Mclaren...senna vs prost, alonso vs hamilton ,button vs hamilton....U dont see it nywhere else ....Go Macca Go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mix - Unregistered

August 02, 2011 10:50 AM

I don't care for how it affects the championship, it makes for bloody entertaining racing, rather than knowing that both or one aren't giving their all.

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