Button lauds bright future for McLaren and Honda

© XPB 

Jenson Button remains confident that McLaren and its engine provider Honda are making significant progress in their efforts to return to the front of the grid.

The team has had a problematic few years since its most recent heyday, but finally looks to be on its way back to form with improved performances in the second half of the 2016 season - a trend that Button is confident will continue.

"I think we have a good plan for future it just takes time to get it working," Button insisted. "It is like Red Bull, they have been in the same direction for a number of years with a car with a massively high rear ride height, brake, and the way they use the airflow around the car.

"For us it takes longer to get it into a place we are happy with. They are going into the right direction and behind the scenes there are good improvements.

"A lot has changed in the aerodynamic department with Peter Prodromou in charge now it is very good in terms of direction," Button continued.

"It is a very different philosophy, I know we use that word a lot, with the aerodynamics and type of car we have. How we use the air flow, which part of the car it is pushing down, whether it is dirty downforce or downforce we can use at every part of a corner.

"On the Honda side in terms of leadership it is very good. How they interact with McLaren is also very good and the improvements they’ve made from last year which still obviously are down in terms of outright power from the ICE. They know that.

"The reliability has got better this year which has allowed us to be more aggressive, for example, the reason for changing my engine for Suzuka and this coming race was because we can push the engine so much better with his new reliability.

"We can run more aggressive and power, like a qualifying-mode, for every lap of the race. They are always pushing and I think Honda has done a really good job this year which might be hard to see when we are just outside the points but it is good foundations for next year.

"There is also good confidence within the team, especially from the Honda side, obviously when we came in and we had failures it hurt confident, especially when you are Japanese and you are very passionate about motor racing. I think it hurt a lot but they have gained a lot of strength from it."

TECHNICAL - Turbulent Jet Ignition: In the antechamber of F1 power

FEATURE: Where and why has Williams been caught out

F1i Classic - Masten Gregory - The 'Kansas City flash'

Silbermann investigates the potential EU threat to F1's Liberty Media deal

2017 F1 driver line-ups so far

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter