Former Renault and Lotus F1 pilot Derek Warwick has predicted Jenson Button will get stronger and better next season.
Button will assume the role of lead driver in 2013 at McLaren following the departure of Lewis Hamilton to Mercedes, and Warwick believes the 32-year-old definitely has what it takes to be the outright 'number one' for the Woking-based outfit, although he concedes JB will have to up his game too.
“Winning the fifteenth race of his career in Brazil was the perfect way for him to finish his season,” Warwick told British newspaper, The Daily Star
this week. “I'm convinced Jenson will develop as team leader [in 2013].
“I'm not saying Lewis was holding him back - but he will now lead that team from the front.
"He will get stronger and better but he will need to because he has lagged behind Lewis for most of this year in terms of pace.”
Despite that, however, Warwick believes Sebastian Vettel will again be the standard setter in 2013.
Warwick also reckons Vettel could go on to surpass the records of Michael Schumacher, echoing recent comments made by legendary motorsports commentator Murray Walker
“For Vettel to equal [Juan Manuel] Fangio and [Michael] Schumacher in winning three Championships on the bounce was amazing. Sebastian could now surpass all records. He could go on and set standards you could really only dream of,” Warwick continued.
“Vettel is already up there in the top ten or 12 in the all-time drivers' list. But you have to take into consideration that he hasn't finished yet. He is only 25. He has another ten, 12 or even 15 years in F1 if he wants to stay around that long and retain his hunger and determination to win.”
“He is [also] personable, a lovely guy to talk to,” Warwick added. “He's what I call a giver to my sport. He promotes F1 in the best possible way.
“It's great to see a young man who is unspoilt by all that has come his way and surrounds him, heading the sport.”