Former F1 and CART champion Nigel Mansell, who earlier this week criticised McLaren for its handling of the Hamilton / Alonso row, has now launched a salvo against Jenson Button.
His latest bid to be removed from the Christmas card list of F1’s current crop of British stars saw him declare that the Honda driver had blown his chances of ever being a champion.
In a whinge worthy of Geoffrey Boycott Mansell told BBC Sport: “Jenson should have won more races, he has under-performed and that is down to him. He had the opportunity and he didn’t take it; there won’t be any more.”
Button’s 2007 season has been wrecked by a Honda that would struggle in a contest with a milk float, but Mansell believes the damage to his career was done in previous years when he underperformed in competitive cars.
“Jenson is a great talent, but he was far better years ago than he is now because he was hungry then. He’s got a great reputation for partying and that’s taken the edge off it.
“He’s a typical example of too much, too soon. He’ll have a great lifestyle but he’s had his opportunities and it hasn’t happened for him.”
The criticism comes days after the 1992 F1 champion weighed into the row currently engulfing McLaren, claiming that in his day arguments between teammates would have been handled better.
“I just feel some of the things that are happening and the way certain things are being managed would have been managed far differently a few years ago and it is a great shame. It’s something for the team to deal with. It’s not something for the public to be part of.
“It’s no different to what happened years ago but it’s publicised more. I drove with Alain Prost, Nelson Piquet and Keke Rosberg. They were all world champions and they are not going to be your best mates.”
After this, the same could be said for Jenson Button.