'F1 won't be much quicker than GP2' - Button


4 February 2014 by TF1T Staff

Jenson Button believes GP2 cars could be a close match for Formula 1 cars this season, thanks to the major regulation changes which have resulted in slower lap times.

The McLaren driver reckons, at particular circuits, the difference in terms of speed won't be as great as it has been in the past due to a combination of changes.

"They [GP2 cars] will be a lot closer on certain circuits," said the Briton. "At high-speed circuits we will be quicker but not that much quicker, but then again this is the first test with a very new package."

In particular, without even taking into account the new aerodynamic rules, the cars are 49kg heavier than in 2013 thanks to the new power unit.

The tyres are also slower due to the increased width at the rear and durability required to handle the torque.

"The medium tyre we think is half a second slower than last year's medium," he estimated. "The cars are also heavier, which is about 1.2s slower through weight alone. So that's 1.6s-1.8s already through those two changes. It was always going to be slower."

He does however expect things to improve as the season progresses due to the development rate.

"When we get to the first race [this year] everyone will be much quicker and then three races in there will be another chunk of lap time and another second or so. By the end of the year we might not be that far off [2013 times] - just a couple of seconds once we get a real handle on it."