Ex-Formula 1 driver Jenson Button has defended Lance Stroll, insisting that he “100 percent” deserves his seat in F1.
“I really feel for Lance, because it is not an easy position to be in,” Button said during the ‘In The Fast Lane’ podcast.
“He knows what people think of him – he’s the gifted driver that his dad has basically bought a team for him. In one way, you can say he’s so lucky but I don’t think he’s lucky at all.”
Continuing, Button said, “I feel for the guy, because there’s so much pressure put on him, and everyone thinks he is in Formula 1 because of his father.
“But he has achieved – he has won everything on the way through to Formula 1. He’s put in some fantastic results and drives, in Barcelona he finished fourth, he beat Checo [Sergio Perez], he did a great job, and he has many times.
“The consistency isn’t there, whether he’s enjoying it himself or not I don’t know, it’s very difficult to tell with Lance, but he 100 percent deserves to be in Formula 1.
“Has he had more opportunities than others? Yes, but I think that’s put more pressure on him, so fair play to him.”
Stroll, who has attracted plenty of criticism for being reliant on his billionaire dad Lawrence Stroll to get into Formula 1, made his debut in 2017.
He entered F1 as the reigning Formula 3 European Champion, but had fairly limited single seater experience at the time.
Amid rumours that Sebastian Vettel is poised to sign a $15 million contract with Racing Point at this weekend’s Belgian GP to replace Sergio Perez next season, Button also looked back on his time as teammates with the Mexican at Mclaren.
“When we were teammates he wasn’t the most consistent, some races he would just arrive and Bahrain he was so fast.
“I don’t know if he understood why he was so fast. But other circuits that didn’t suit his style really hurt him, like Shanghai, where it is front-limited.
Continuing, Button said Perez had a very unusual driving style that was suited some circuits.
“I don’t know if that’s still the case but he is extremely quick, a real fighter, he’s grown as a driver. He’s confident in his ability, he understands the bigger picture, it’s a long season.”
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