Monaco Grand Prix: Jenson Button feeling no pressure on Formula 1 return

Jenson Button
Jenson Button won the Monaco Grand Prix in 2009
Monaco Grand Prix on the BBC
Date: 25-28 May Venue: Circuit de Monaco
Coverage: Practice on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra (final practice online only). Qualifying and race on BBC Radio 5 live. Live text commentary, leaderboard and imagery on BBC Sport website and app.

Jenson Button says he is feeling no pressure going into his one-off return to Formula 1 at Monaco this weekend.

The 2009 world champion is substituting at McLaren for Fernando Alonso, who is racing in the Indianapolis 500.

Button said: "I am very relaxed. Very excited, actually. It is interesting coming back for one grand prix.

"It being Monaco is very special. I have won here. I lived here for 17 years. It is exciting but I don't feel any pressure."

McLaren have not scored any points this year and are last in the constructors' championship. Monaco represents their best chance of points so far.

Alonso put the car seventh on the grid in Barcelona two weeks ago, and the car should be even better suited to Monaco, where the lack of power from the Honda engine is less important in the overall performance of the car than at any other track this year.

"Everything in life is the same," Briton Button said. "You want to get the best out of yourself and the equipment and team you're working with.

"The car seemed to be working well in Barcelona. Fernando did a good job. It proves the car is good. I drove the car in the simulator, I drove the upgrade and if it all goes well we should be reasonably competitive."

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Button 'very excited' for F1 return in Monaco

The cars have changed significantly since Button retired from F1 at the end of last season, with rule changes making them faster and more demanding - and also 20cm wider.

Button's first experience of the McLaren on a race track will be in first practice at Monaco on Thursday. He turned down the chance to test in Bahrain in April because he felt it would not have been productive.

"I thought would be absolutely useless for me to do, completely different circuit," he said.

"Preparation could have been better if I had had the opportunity to test the car at a proper test but that's not the way F1 works.

"Fitness won't be an issue. My neck will be a bit sore after Thursday but we have Friday off and Mikey 'Muscles' (Collier), my physio, is back for one weekend. It's a challenge and that's what we're all here for, isn't it?

"I have every bit of information possible and I have run through it for several days - how the car works, the way the tyres work.

"The tyres have been pretty tricky the last few years, they work differently but you work your way around it. A few things will be tricky but it is about putting the effort in and working around the issues.

"The only thing I am worried about is my neck, but apart from that it should be all right."

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