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JUNE 24, 2013

Lowe exit not cause of McLaren crisis

Jenson Button has denied the absence of former technical director Paddy Lowe explains McLaren's struggle in 2013.

Before starting work at Mercedes a few weeks ago, the highly rated Lowe was on 'gardening leave' from his duties at McLaren.

Could that explain McLaren's slump in 2013, or the difficulties the Woking based team has faced in solving the MP4-28's problems?

"I don't think so," Button told British reporters ahead of his and McLaren's home grand prix at Silverstone.

"Paddy is a great guy, but I don't think one individual is the reason we are not performing. Our mistake was at the end of last year, when we decided to go the way we did with the car.

"Trying to find your way back from that is so, so difficult."

Throughout the McLaren crisis, it has been constantly suggested that the team should identify those responsible and fire them.

Button doesn't agree.

"For the drivers or any of the management to come out and say 'Right, it's this guy's fault, let's fire him' is the wrong attitude.

"You are going to scare people, and maybe go in the wrong direction," he said.

"It's not one person's problem."

Button said that also goes for the man right at the top of the McLaren tree, team boss Martin Whitmarsh.

"He is a massive part of this team," he insisted. "It is so tough for him at the moment, it really is.

"He is not going to point the finger, he will take the blame. I really like that about Martin - I think he is a really good leader," said Button.