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Button confident 'we'll see the best of recharged Hamilton' in new Verstappen battle

Button confident 'we'll see the best of recharged Hamilton' in new Verstappen battle

F1 News

Button confident 'we'll see the best of recharged Hamilton' in new Verstappen battle

Button confident 'we'll see the best of recharged Hamilton' in new Verstappen battle

Jenson Button has no doubt F1 will again "see the best" of a "recharged" Lewis Hamilton this year after shaking off the disillusionment of last season's title defeat to Max Verstappen.

Following a winter in which Hamilton shied away from all social media and was rarely seen in public, the seven-time champion returns to pull the wraps off Mercedes' W13 on Friday alongside new team-mate George Russell.

It will have been just over two months since Hamilton missed out on the chance of an eighth title given the controversy of the ending to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix which left him "disillusioned" according to team principal Toto Wolff.

Given the feelings at the time, 2009 F1 champion Button has suggested it is "difficult to understand where he is" but is hopeful the time away will have cleared his mind.

"I think for him it was a fantastic time to get away from the sport and relax and recharge," said Button, speaking on Sky Sports News. "Every driver needs that.

"It doesn't matter whether they've won the world championship or not, or lost the world championship on the last lap.

"He'll come back a recharged man and we'll see the best of Lewis Hamilton.

"He is one of the best guys that's ever driven a Formula 1 car and he's going up against one of the best that's ever driven a Formula 1 car.

"This battle, this doesn't happen very often in Formula 1 so hopefully we're going to have a lot more of that in 2022."

'Drivers will know with first run if car is good' - Button

Hamilton returns to a new era of F1 given the change to the aerodynamic regulations and the development of a ground-effect car designed to improve the racing and aid overtaking.

Button, who knew instantly he had a winning car on his hands when he stepped into the Brawn GP for the first time in 2009, believes the drivers this season will be aware whether they are in for a good year or not after the first run in their new machines.

"This is a really exciting time as a driver," added Button.

"The winter...winters are quite short for an F1 driver. They would have recharged their batteries, done all the training to get back in the car.

"But they will be so excited to see what that car gives them on the first day of testing.

"And after the first run in testing, you will know how good the car is. There are things you can change and maybe aerodynamic devices aren't working correctly.

"But you kind of know on that first day of testing whether you've got a winner or a loser."

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