In a rare rebuke by the McLaren group chairman, Ron Dennis has criticised the F1 team’s drivers.
In comments carried by British newspapers, the Woking based company’s shareholder and former long-time F1 principal publicly scolded Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button for criticising the qualifying pace of the MP4-25.
Title leader Hamilton on Friday said his 2010 car is “massively down” on pace at the Hungaroring.
But he and Button have each won two grands prix so far in 2010, and are at the top of the drivers’ championship. McLaren also leads the constructors’ standings, but the perception is that Red Bull and Ferrari have the fastest cars.
“We do have a very good race car,” insisted Dennis.
“So I find it infuriating when my guys say ‘I wish I was on the front row’ and build in the perception that we’re giving them cars less capable of winning races,” he added.
“It’s the nature of drivers.”
Dennis’ successor Martin Whitmarsh moved to play down Dennis’ comments, amid rumours the 63-year-old might be keen to return to the F1 team.
“Ron’s not actually involved in running the race team, but he is, of course, chairman of the group and a shareholder in it,” he said.
Former long-time McLaren driver David Coulthard wrote in a Telegraph column that it is “the first time” he can remember Dennis publicly criticise the team’s current drivers.
© RIF | GMM