Almost a year to the day that Jenson Button took his maiden Formula 1 win at the Hungaroring, Honda's season of woe hit another low as a troublesome weekend for the Brackley based outfit ended in disappointment.

For the first time this season, both Button and team-mate Rubens Barrichello failed to make it through the first knockout stage in qualifying and lined up down in 17th and 18th place on the grid - and things wouldn't get any better when the race got underway.

Indeed, despite the lack of pace displayed during qualifying, Button's inability to make up any places in the opening stages of the race as he circulated down in 19th place, but with the car lacking speed and poorly balanced, he was unable to make any impression on the race before retiring on lap 36 with a throttle sensor issue.

"What can I say?" a despondent Button reflected, having seen fellow Briton Lewis Hamilton take his Hungarian GP crown. "We all know the problems and how much work there is to be done.

"The problem that brought my race to an end appears to be a sensor problem as I couldn't get full throttle for a few laps before I eventually slowed for the blue flags. Then the engine just stalled. Before that we were massively off the pace and I struggled with huge understeer. Our results today speak for themselves."

Things didn't get much better for Barrichello, who at least managed to get his RA107 to the finish. However, in an indication of just how much Honda has slipped this season, the Brazilian found himself 18th - and last - behind the Spyker of Adrian Sutil and two laps off the pace.

"Today we just didn't have any pace and despite the fact that I was pushing as much as possible, there was nothing coming from the car," he said. "The race started badly when I was pushed wide at the exit of turn two and ended up at the back of the field. Overtaking is next to impossible at this track so that was the story of my race really.

"Everyone at the team is feeling the pain at the moment. We know how bad the situation is but we have to keep our heads up and keep working at it over the break to find some improvements."

With both his drivers far from happy with how the weekend had panned out, engineering director Jacky Eeckelaert admitted that Hungary 2007 had been a weekend to forget for the team and said the was a 'huge' amount of work to do before the Turkish race in three weeks time.

"This has been a weekend to forget," he said. "Quite simply, we did not have the race pace here. On the first lap Rubens lost some places when he ran wide at turn two. Thereafter, having started 18th on the grid, it was just a case of getting to the end of the race and looking for opportunities. There was nothing more he could have done with the car today. A similar story for Jenson until an engine-related problem stopped him out on the circuit.

"We have three weeks before the next race and a huge amount of work to do in that time."

 

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