Atlas F1 News Service, a Reuters report

Button Shines after Reassurance from Williams

Sunday July 16th, 2000

Jenson Button earned fifth place in his tenth grand prix on Sunday after reassurance from team boss Frank Williams in a "friendly chat" about his future.

The 20-year-old Briton said he had "not got a clue" about whether he would stay at Williams next season but he staked his claim by taking two points after starting 18th on the grid.

"Jenson really excelled himself again driving in difficult circumstances at the end of the race and under a lot of pressure," said Frank Williams.

Austrian Gerhard Berger, BMW's motorsport director, added: "Apart from one mistake, Jenson drove an outstanding race, the first corner melee at the start was obviously to our advantage."

Button told Britain's ITV television: "It's good to get some points again after such a long time."

Button, whose place at the team is threatened by the likely return of Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya from the U.S., said he had met Williams over the race weekend.

"It was just a friendly little chat really. Obviously we're both very busy at the weekend so it's good to talk now and again. It was just reassurance really," he said.

"Nothing's been decided for my future next year and it was just reassurance really, (he said) don't worry about it and do your best this weekend.

"We had a good chat, not just about racing but other things as well. I think we're all in good spirits now, especially after today's result."

Button was also fifth in the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in April and in March became the youngest points scorer in Formula One history when he took sixth place in Brazil after David Coulthard was disqualified.

He described Sunday's accident-marred race in Austria as "a bit more luck than judgment on the first corner. I suppose I was in the right place at the right time and I think I came out about seventh.

"It wasn't a bad start and then in the pit stops the team did a great job to get me out in front of Salo and Herbert.

"There were cars all over the place, it was just like dodgems. It was crazy," Button added of the first corner crashes that put championship leader Michael Schumacher out of the race after a matter of seconds.

"Then I had my own little excursion towards the end of the race but I've told Frank (Williams) and (technical director) Patrick (Head) that I did that on purpose to make it more interesting.

"I think they were getting bored at the end."

Button's two points lifted him in the standings alongside Williams' former driver Heinz-Harald Frentzen, now with Jordan, on a total of five.

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