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NASCAR Top-10 Qualifying Performance Makes Button “Happy”

NASCAR Former Formula 1 World Champion Jenson Button has demonstrated some speed as he begins his excursion into the stock car world ahead of NASCAR’s first-ever street course race.

This weekend on the streets of Chicago, 43-year-old Button will start in his second NASCAR Cup Series race.

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He rapidly established himself as one of the track’s fastest drivers after switching to the No. 15 Rick Ware Racing Ford (with assistance from Stewart-Haas Racing).

Given that everyone is using this circuit for the first time this weekend, the playing field is a little bit more even. In his previous start, a clearly worn-out Button completed a creditable 18th in a chaotic race at COTA.

He has expressed the desire for a “calmer” race in Chicago, and he believes that starting nearer the front may facilitate it.

Behind Denny Hamlin and Shane van Gisbergen, who will be making his Cup debut on Sunday, Button was third fastest in practice.

Of the five drivers who moved on from Group A to the final round of qualifying, Button was fourth. His quick lap was good for eighth on the grid, despite the fact that he ultimately failed to contend for the pole. That’s 16 spots higher than his starting position at COTA, which was 24th.

The second-highest qualifying Ford driver in the field, Button was 1.136s slower than Hamlin, who won the pole.

After the event on Saturday, he observed, “It’s been a terrific day. You always desire more than you have, which is funny, don’t you think? It appears to be the way of life. No, it was a successful run in the sense that, in my opinion, nothing went wrong. I believe there was some imbalance in the balance. I would classify that as understeer since the car has been battling us. The majority of people are doing the time on the first lap, so I really battled to get a lap on that one. So, that really hurts me.

“I was hurt in Q1, and then I had traffic in Q2. I can’t finish the lap on the first lap, but traffic started on my second loop. I had to complete a cool-down lap before continuing because it was a little irritating. Never functions well. It’s not that horrible, P8. With that, I’m pretty content. I simply wish Q2 had been a clean run. I might have had a few extra spots. Even though it wouldn’t have been in the top three, it would have been a few more spots.

Between COTA and Chicago, Button raced in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in a Next Gen Cup car that had been modified for the Garage 56 entry.

He believes he has learned a lot over the previous three months and is “definitely” more at ease before this event. The button also had high respect for Van Gisbergen, the three-time Australian Supercars champion who almost missed securing pole position for the NASCAR season.

“To every one of us, it is new. I believe Shane [Van Gisbergen] performed quite well. First time in a Cup car, but he has experience driving a heavy car on a street circuit. He was probably always going to be swift. We were a little behind the top three there, but we were getting closer. Being able to place in the Top 10 is fantastic.

Who can predict tomorrow? We anticipate experiencing rain in the morning. The balance of the car is excellent; it seems more like a racing car than a qualifying car. When the race tomorrow comes along, that is something to be pleased about. Thank you to Mobil 1 for providing me this chance once more, as well as to the entire team.

This year, Button intends to compete in three NASCAR races, with his third and final Cup race taking place at the Indianapolis Road Course in a month.

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Amelia Jhon

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