Jenson Button appears unconcerned that rumours linking double Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso to his Honda team could lead to him being left on the sidelines for 2009.

While the axe appears to hang more precariously over the neck of veteran team-mate Rubens Barrichello, insiders will know that Button is no safer from the chop until a contract has been signed and announcement made confirming him for another season at Brackley.

Alonso, meanwhile, continues to be linked to a possible partnership with renowned designer and tactical ace Ross Brawn, who now heads up Honda's F1 operation and will go into 2009 looking to improve greatly on the team's recent performances, especially with a clean sheet of paper to work with thanks to F1's latest batch of regulation changes.

"Every team will say they are going to be quicker next year than this year, that they are going to build a good car," Button admitted, "There is one thing we can't do and that's make a slow car.

"I am positive for next year and, hopefully, I will be with Honda again and we can build a very competitive car. I know that the team will do a great job in building a new car, but it's what other people do, that's what we have got to wait and see...."

Confirming that he does not yet have a deal, Button insisted that there was no need to be hasty about agreeing terms with one of the few teams to still have vacancies left for 2009.

"We are not in a rush, it's fine," he maintained, "There is a lot changing next year, which makes it very exciting. Ross is very good at new regulations and I am looking forward to it, driving with slick tyres and new aero spec and obviously the KERS technology. There is a lot to play with there - and a lot for us to get right."

The Briton's attitude suggests that he is confident in the notion that he will be returning to Honda next season, whether alongside Alonso, Barrichello or some, as yet, unthought-of team-mate. Alonso, meanwhile, continues to suggest that Renault remains his first priority for 2009, after potential deals with Red Bull, Ferrari and BMW Sauber were closed off in recent weeks.

Toro Rosso and Force India join the regie as the only teams outside of Honda thought to have seats unfilled for next season.