Despite still clinging to the distant possibility of taking his own second F1 world title, Jenson Button
openly admits that rival Sebastian Vettel
would be a deserving winner this year.
The Briton knows that his chances are remote - and would take a meltdown of monumental proportions if Vettel was to fail to claim the single point he requires from five rounds - conceding that the German and Red Bull
have been far and away the best combination in 2011.
"[I could] pay a lot of drivers a lot of money to get rid of him for me - and then I have to win every single remaining race," he joked when asked by the official F1 website what it would take for him to beat Vettel, "But let's be serious: Sebastian has done a fantastic job this season, so he fully deserves the title - but, of course, it would be nice to take it to another race. That's what I am aiming for this weekend. A little rain on his parade - and a win for me - would make my weekend!"
However, with Vettel yet to post a retirement in 2011 - indeed, the German has yet to finish outside the points and only rarely off the podium - Button accepts that Sunday will largely focus on what the German achieves, regardless of who wins the race.
"Even if I should win here, my guess is that it would be a bit overshadowed by Sebastian's title win," he conceded, "But crossing the line first here, that win would be a massive feeling and, from what we've seen today, the odds are not that bleak! The car feels fantastic and, even if the times don't say much, that feeling of confidence in your car lets us hope for more in qualifying and in the race."
With a Japanese girlfriend and other personal ties to the country, victory at Suzuka would be especially sweet for the Briton, but has acknowledges that he does not have the best of records at the race,
"I think it was only one [time], or maximum two, that I've been on the podium here, and I definitely haven't been on the top of the podium - that's still missing," he confirmed, "But I love this track and I've completed every single lap here. It is a very demanding track, demanding for us drivers, and it would be fantastic to win here."