FUTURE IN DOUBT: McLaren’s Jenson Button says the love of the sport is more important than cash to him and he hope the team will feel the same when considering whether or not to replace.Image: AFP / Mark Thompson
SAO PAULO, Brazil - Jenson Button is hoping that McLaren will not let him go for the love of money.
With Ferrari's Fernando Alonso expected to join the Formula 1 team, the focus has been on whether Button or Kevin Magnussen will partner Alonso in 2015.
McLaren is believed to be divided, with Magnussen offering potential and seen as a cheaper option while Button is a hugely experienced race winner. He was an impressive fourth at the 2014 Brazilian F1 GP (Nov 9) while Magnussen had a difficult afternoon and was ninth.
LOVE OF THE GAME
Button said: "Whatever happens in 2015, the money is not the issue in any way, shape or form - for me, anyway. Whether I'm racing here or racing somewhere else, I do it because I love it.
"I still want to earn money because I feel I have achieved and I feel that I should get paid for what I do in an F1 car or in a racing car and for what I bring to a team.
"But... I will race somewhere even if I'm not getting the big bucks, unlike a few drivers who are out there."
Double F1 champion Alonso is one of the highest-paid drivers, with reports suggesting he has already signed to join McLaren at the start of the team’s new partnership with Honda. He said he hoped Button would will still be around in 2015.
Button, who suspected Alonso had little say in the matter, said he had also felt a wave of warmth from fans on social media: "There's so much support. It makes you very emotional. I've never seen anything like it. It's more than when I won the championship."
A similar show of love from McLaren would be appreciated.
Alonso said: "You want to feel like you are wanted within a team and part of the family. It's like if your parents were to turn round and say 'You know what, we're not sure if we want you at Christmas this year. But your brother can come, he's great’.
"You want to feel like you are part of the family and that they want you to be part of the family. That's more important than cash."Stay with Wheels24 for the 2014 F1 season – fresh reports every day.