Jenson Button will stay with BAR-Honda in 2006 - providing the Brackley based squad pay Williams around £50 million in compensation.
Button signed a deal with Williams for 2006 last year, when ironically he wanted to leave BAR for the Grove based squad. However in the end after the Contract Recognition Board ruled BAR had the valid contract he was made to stay with them for this season. Button though has now decided he doesn't want to move anymore, following BMW's decision to leave Williams and go it alone.
According to British newspaper, The News of the World
, BAR have already offered Williams around £20 million, an offer Frank Williams has rejected.
"Their first offer was way short of the mark," a Williams 'insider' supposedly told the 'paper. "Frank can play hard-ball on this because we have a water-tight contact with Jenson for next season.
"If BAR are so keen to keep Jenson they will have to offer a lot more money."
BAR boss, Nick Fry meanwhile has confirmed again that they are very keen to keep hold of Jenson, despite the fact he has yet to win a grand prix. Ideally BAR would like to partner him with Rubens Barrichello next season, after signing the Brazilian earlier this month.
"If Williams want to do a deal we are open to discussion," added Fry. "Jenson is worth a lot to both teams. We wouldn't be squabbling over him if he were not, but his value is impossible to quantify. Jenson has already started the process of trying to get out of his Williams contract. There has been a number of letters going backwards and forwards and also discussions."
BAR have apparently offered Button a five-year deal worth £50 million, should
he manage to get out of his deal with Williams.