- German Grand Prix - Qualifying
Button confident in strategy
Jenson Button believes the cars in the top ten of the grid starting Sunday's German Grand Prix on medium compound tyres will hold a strategic advantage early in the race.
Ferrari opted to qualify both of its drivers on medium tyres, with Felipe Massa seventh and Fernando Alonso eighth. Button has a choice of tyres from ninth after deciding not to set a time in Q3, but will be ahead of Nico Hulkenberg in tenth, who didn't leave the pits.
With the soft tyre lasting just a handful of laps before its performance falls below the medium tyre, Button believes Ferrari could be well placed on Sunday.
"The Ferrari's are on the prime [medium], I understand the reason, but I was a little bit surprised that they are both running the prime and set a lap time because Fernando is behind Felipe. I would have thought they would put Felipe on an option tyre to chuck him at the front after he was quickest in Q2. But that's the choice they've made and I think it's very interesting that there are two cars on primes so far up the grid. It's going to be very tricky for the cars that are at the front on option tyres."
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh added: "The Ferraris are on four lap-old primes and I think the majority of cars behind them will follow suit. The track is hotter but there is every indication that the option tyre, after you've qualified on it, won't run that long into the race."
Button said it was always a tough choice not to set a time in qualifying but is confident of his chances.
"In terms of qualifying it was a difficult decision in Q3 to run or not," he said. "The heart says you want to go and set a time and possibly we would have been P6, but the head says it's probably best to not set a time and get the choice for tomorrow. It's going to be hot so it could be tricky for both tyres. Especially with the pressures where they are, I think the prime tyre is going to overheat and I think the option tyre is going to grain. It's the same for all of us but it's at what time you want to go through the pain."