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Last Updated: Friday, 19 November, 2004, 17:32 GMT
BAR boss hoping to keep Button
BAR team principal David Richards
I think that the elusive win we were looking for this year is just around the corner
Dave Richards
Departing BAR team boss Dave Richards hopes star driver Jenson Button will be pursuaded to stay with the team as a result of Honda's part buy-out.

Button wanted to move to Williams after the 2004 season but was told he had to stay with BAR for another year.

"I'm sure when he sees the performance of the car and team he'll see there are great foundations here," said Richards.

"But I don't suppose he'll be making that decision in the short term, he'll wait to see how next season pans out."

Richards, who took BAR to second in the constructors championship thanks to four second-place finishes from Button, thinks the young star is about to inherit the most competitive car he has ever driven.

And he is tipping the 24-year-old Briton to finally score his first Formula One win.

Richards, who will leave BAR as a result of the reshuffle, said: "The car will be extremely competitive next year. Honda have done a great job on the new engine and the chassis is looking good.

"I think that the elusive win we were looking for this year is just around the corner.

"Despite everyone expecting Ferrari to be extremely strong next year, there is every chance BAR can challenge them right the way down the line next year."

Honda have long been BAR's engine partner but Friday's deal, revealed by BBC Sport, bring the two parties even closer, a move Richards is convinced can only be good news for Button and the rest of the Brackley-based squad's staff.

"The arrival of Honda and their investment clearly is a very solid and positive sign for the team," he said.

"With Honda's commitment to the team - a wind tunnel starts building here on Monday - and other investment from them in the long term, it means everyone here now has total security of their jobs with the Formula One team going forward."

Honda poised to make BAR F1 move
17 Nov 04 |  Formula One
BAR win Button contract dispute
20 Oct 04 |  Formula One


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