Button: 'I wasn't to Hamilton's taste as McLaren team-mate'

"I don't think I was to his taste," that was the verdict of Jenson Button on his relationship with former team-mate Lewis Hamilton.

Button arrived at McLaren in 2010 having claimed the world title in 2009 with Brawn.   -  Gety Images

Jenson Button has revealed he and Lewis Hamilton had an awkward relationship during their time as team-mates at McLaren, believing he was not to his compatriot's taste.

Button arrived at McLaren in 2010 having claimed the world title in 2009 with Brawn.

His link-up with McLaren gave the team an all-British driver line-up with two world champions, but the partnership with Hamilton was far from a harmonious one.

In a segment of his autobiography 'Life to the Limit' released by The Daily Telegraph, Button wrote of their relationship in his first season with McLaren: "Personally, he was fine with me, no issues at all at this stage of the game, but you could just tell he was a little bit peeved.

"That thing about it being his team? It was right on the money. And, if you ask me, he was finding it difficult to get a handle on the fact that it was our team now.

"It was good that we were able to come in and lift the place, add a bit of much-needed levity. I'm not sure that was to Lewis' taste. I don't think that I was to his taste, if I'm honest.

"As people, we had a lot in common. There was our shared karting history, not to mention the fact that his dad was a customer of my dad.

"And, unlike a lot of drivers in Formula 1, neither of us came from an especially wealthy background. We'd achieved what we had through talent and a lot of grafting.

"When we spent time together it was nice, and he'd always strike up a conversation with dad, and we'd hang out a bit.

"But at the same time there were an awful lot of awkward and uncomfortable silences, and often I'd think: 'What's going unsaid here?'"

McLaren attempted to give the impression of Button and Hamilton being friends, even conceiving a cartoon involving the pair.

Button added: "[It] portrayed us as bantering rivals. The rivalry was real... but there wasn't a great deal of banter."

However, Button has been impressed by how Hamilton has grown since those days, as he has gone on to dominate the sport with Mercedes.

"He's matured, become a bit of a statesman and a great representative of the sport," Button said.

"He's built on all that talent and hard work and he's a more rounded character as a result."

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