JULY 16, 2000
Button could join Villeneuve at Benetton
JENSON BUTTON could join Jacques Villeneuve in the Benetton-Renault line-up for the 2001 season if Flavio Briatore has a major re-shake of his driver line-up and dispenses with Giancarlo Fisichella and Alexander Wurz.
The 20-year old British driver has been in talks with Briatore as the Benetton boss attempts to raise the Benetton F1 profile following several disappointing seasons. Villeneuve, who is also currently being wooed by BAR, confirmed at the weekend that he is not yet ready to make a decision about his plans for next season.
For his part, Fisichella is believed to have received an approach from the Jaguar F1 team. The Italian driver, who commands a 6 million pound retainer this season with Benetton, has been told that he is free to negotiate with other teams even though it was believed that he had a binding deal with Benetton until the end of next season.
Meanwhile Jaguar is still scheduled to test CART star Dario Franchitti although no firm date has yet been arranged.