F1 firebrand is ‘out of this world’

With a career spanning 17 years, Jenson Button has raced against some of Formula 1’s most legendary drivers — and the Sky Sports F1 pundit has selected six who he would rank as the best he’s ever shared the track with.

The former world champion made his selections on the Sky F1 Vodcast.

"I've struggled to get less than six (of the greatest F1 drivers) … and it's going to be the six while I've been racing because it's the only way I can really judge them because I've been on the track with them," explained Button, who won his world title with Brawn in 2009 and retired in 2016.

"I always find it difficult comparing someone like (Juan Manuel) Fangio to someone like Lewis (Hamilton). They're decades apart, and it's a completely different sport."

So who makes Button's list? He started with two drivers he partnered at McLaren — Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso.

"I've been teammates with both of them and they have immense talent, in very different ways," Button said.

Next for Button were two more current F1 2020 drivers — one a multi world champion and one an emerging star.

Max Verstappen is a world champion in waiting.Source:Getty Images

"Sebastian Vettel, because doing four (world championships with Red Bull) on the bounce was a big deal. He's struggling a bit now, and has made silly mistakes, against a very competitive teammate (Charles Leclerc), but I think it's going to make him a better driver in the future,” Button said.

"Then I have to say Max Verstappen.”

"I didn't race with him for many years, but seeing his performances in tricky conditions like in Brazil 2016 (when the Dutchman came third as a teenager in a performance that marked his arrival on the big stage), that is just out of this world.

“Staggering what he can do with a car."

Button, who started his F1 career back in 2000 with Williams, then went for two F1 icons.

"The other two are from my early days in F1 — which would be Mika Hakkinen, and obviously the great Michael Schumacher."

This article first appeared on Sky Sports and was reproduced with permission

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