David Coulthard says he wouldn’t be surprised if Jenson Button announces his retirement at the end of the season following a difficult and frustrating season at McLaren.
It’s believed the Briton has made the decision to finish his Formula 1 career, with an announcement expected at the Japanese Grand Prix this weekend.
It follows a tough year which has seen him score just six points from 13 races, five of which he’s failed to even finish and one he didn’t even start due to problems with his Honda engine.
Coulthard, a former McLaren driver himself, admitted he didn’t know whether Button had chosen to retire but it wouldn’t come as a surprise.
“I do not know whether Jenson Button has decided to walk away from Formula 1 at the end of this year,” he wrote in his column for the BBC.
“But if that is the way it turns out, it would not be a massive surprise.
“It has been a very difficult year for Button and Fernando Alonso at McLaren-Honda, with a hopelessly uncompetitive and unreliable car.
“Both of them have kept their spirits up remarkably well in the circumstances, but for Jenson there have been moments recently when it was clear the frustration was getting difficult to bear.”
Should Button follow the retirement path, Coulthard believes it’s important he’s given a good send off.
“I just hope that, if he has decided to go, he gets a chance to be celebrated and clapped off the stage at the end of his career.
“A driver and man of his calibre deserves to be sent off with a standing ovation, not slope off into a winter of uncertainty.”