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Last Updated: Friday, 31 March 2006, 16:05 GMT 17:05 UK
Button backs Barrichello recovery
Australian GP, 2 April. Start: 0500 GMT

Rubens Barrichello
Barrichello has not had a happy time at Honda so far
Jenson Button expects team-mate Rubens Barrichello to solve the problems that have left him uncompetitive since joining Honda for this season.

Former Ferrari driver Barrichello has failed to score points so far while Button has a fourth and a third place.

Button said: "He has struggled a little bit to get to grips with the car, which probably suits my style a bit more.

"He's having issues and when he solves them I'm sure he'll be there because he is quick - very quick."

Button admitted he was "surprised" by Barrichello's performance in the last race in Malaysia, when he struggled to an uncompetitive 10th place while the Englishman was on the rostrum.

"I think he does need to adapt," he added. "There are some improvements which are coming which will help both of us."

It is disappointing - I really felt on the top of my problems after we tested a lot in the winter
Rubens Barrichello
Team boss Nick Fry said he expected Barrichello to improve - but not necessarily in time for this weekend's Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.

"I wouldn't expect it to change overnight," Fry said. "I would expect Rubens' performance to improve race by race as he gets more used to the team.

"We have made some changes to the car. These are genuine improvements to the car, they will help Jenson as well."

Barrichello left Ferrari at the end of last season because he was fed up playing second fiddle to Michael Schumacher.

And the 33-year-old said he was surprised to find himself so far off the pace.

"It is disappointing. I really felt on the top of my problems after we tested a lot in the winter," he said.

Rubens Barrichello in his Honda at the Australian Grand Prix
Barrichello has not found the Honda to his liking
"The way I am driving the car is not the way I have driven my whole life. I have to drive different.

"The Fridays (of a Grand Prix weekend) have been a small struggle and I've had to get on top of it.

"In Malaysia I struggled big time from the first time I went out - I never got a balance."

He said he was hopeful of a better showing around the Albert Park track this weekend.

"This is one of my favourite races," he added. "I love the place.

"Melbourne is the third race this year but for me it's just like the first race because I haven't scored in the other ones.

"I think you learn from the difficulties. I went back (to Europe after the Malaysian Grand Prix) to do some testing, I think it was a little bit better."

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