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The "unconfortable" conflict of interest of Button-Vandoorne


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#1 charly0418

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 10:14

A quick info introduction for people that don't know:

 

Jenson Button is the manager of current McLaren junior Stoffel Vandoorne

 

http://www.gptoday.c...doorne/?related

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=V5FftmkQ5C8 (around the 20 second mark he mentions it)

 

 

Now for you this may seem normal, but after McLaren dropped one of its drivers for Magnussen you have to wonder how awkard this situation is:

- If Button fails to beat Magnussen in 2014, is the only threat to his seat Alonso?

 

I have to say that I hate the fact that drivers themselves manage youngsters that are close to F1 (like Webber and Evans), Button is pretty much assured of not being kicked out like Perez simply because he owns the kid behind him, of course, McLaren could drop him for someone like Hulkenberg or Grosjean next year, but given how they passed on all of them this season, you have to wonder that if Alonso stays at Ferrari, Button will be safe no matter what happens in 2014.

 

You want to look it at the other way around? Here's an even more awkard scenario: Magnussen gets beaten by Button easily and McLaren decide to team Jenson with the guy he manages... ugh

 

Another driver that is currently part of Buttons management group? Paul Di Resta. I bet when Perez and Paul were fighting for that 2nd Force India seat it was all hugs and laughs by Pauls management group when trying to convince Force India.

I'm probably looking too much into this but this is Formula 1 and being evil minded about every scenario is almost always the correct assumption,the fact that a driver is invloved in the management of a current one and a future one is not right for me.

 

Let me make this clear, I dont hate Button, I just hate the fact that he manages a promising kid who could be blocked by a move to McLaren simply because of who manages him

 

 

 

 

 



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#2 DanardiF1

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 10:18

It was Stoff's decision as well... Perhaps the deal was made on the assumption that when Jenson eventually retires there'll be a spot for Stoffel at McLaren...

#3 Disgrace

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 10:25

This is all hypothetical hot air. I cannot envisage a situation in which Magnussen will be cast aside after a single season, regardless of results. McLaren will exhaust all time possible to make him a success. Only if he turns out to be Piquet Jr, he may lose his seat in 2015/6.



#4 goingthedistance

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 10:26

I also think it's problematic that Vandoorne is managed by Button, and I imagine McLaren aren't particularly pleased by it. I think it provides Button's management group with more leverage if he is controlling some of their alternative options. I wonder how much of their preferencing of Magnusson was a message to Jenson. I personally think Vandoorne is better than Magnusson in terms of raw speed. 

 

I don't think it's analogous to Webber and Evans though. Evans is younger and further away from F1, and is managed by Mark's partner. Not to mention Mark has known for some time that he plans to retire.  



#5 Risil

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 10:47

Maybe Button will deliberately drive badly to get sacked midseason and be replaced by Vandoorne.



#6 onewingedangel

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 11:16

Button himself doesn't directly manage Vandoorne, but Button set up a sports management group with his manager, which Vandoorne is a part of. However I believe Buttons contribution is largely financial at this point, perhaps looking to build a business for his post F1 life. So you could just as easily say that Vandoorne has the same management as Button. Perhaps once Button retires he will take a more active role in the management/development of the young drivers.


Edited by onewingedangel, 23 December 2013 - 19:44.


#7 boldhakka

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 11:23

As long as everything is entirely transparent, there's no problem. Vandoorne is obviously well-aware of any potential conflict of interest.

#8 FullThrottleF1

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 11:39

I can't see Button racing past 2014 anyways.



#9 Doughnut King

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 12:13

I can't see Button racing past 2014 anyways.

 

Unless he has a particularly good season, I think you might be right, though him continuing in 2015 wouldn't surprise me.



#10 Disgrace

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 12:18

Unless Alonso turfs Button out like he did at Renault, I would have thought that a Honda/Button reunion was a sensible option. I guess it depends on where the latest set of regulations put him in the pecking order.



#11 Owen

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 12:19

All the power is with the teams though. Always has been.



#12 Amphicar

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 12:29

I also think it's problematic that Vandoorne is managed by Button, and I imagine McLaren aren't particularly pleased by it. I think it provides Button's management group with more leverage if he is controlling some of their alternative options. I wonder how much of their preferencing of Magnusson was a message to Jenson. I personally think Vandoorne is better than Magnusson in terms of raw speed. 

 

I don't think it's analogous to Webber and Evans though. Evans is younger and further away from F1, and is managed by Mark's partner. Not to mention Mark has known for some time that he plans to retire.  

Vandoorne is asked about his management deal in an interview on the official Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes website: http://www.mclaren.c...doorne-q-and-a/

 

"You’re now managed by Richard Goddard, Jenson Button’s manager, aren’t you?

SV: Yes. Richard is a very wise and intelligent man, and he’s helped me a lot already. And, apart from Richard himself, it’s of course really nice that I’m in the same driver-management family as Jenson, who’s a brilliant driver who I have a massive amount of respect for."

 

I doubt that McLaren would have deliberately mentioned Stoffel's management deal if they were unhappy with it - or have reported his glowing testimonial to Richard Goddard & Jenson.


Edited by Amphicar, 23 December 2013 - 12:30.


#13 ch103

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 12:52

To the OP - I see your point and agree with it for the most part. 

 

You just have to wonder, would Stoffel be as close to an F1 seat if he was not managed by Button?  If the answer is no, then having JB as his manager is a net positive for him, knowing the conflicts of interests JB would have in getting Stoffel into McLaren.

 

The most desired scenario, IMO, would be to get Stoffel into Force India to gauge if Stoffel is cut out for McLaren.



#14 Coops3

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 12:55

It was Stoff's decision as well... Perhaps the deal was made on the assumption that when Jenson eventually retires there'll be a spot for Stoffel at McLaren...

That's what I was going to say. I mean, presumably he has some say in the matter, so if he feels it's not working to his advantage, he could change managers?



#15 BRG

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 13:40

Now when Briatore was team principal AND manager of the team's drivers, that was a conflict of interest. 

 

This?  Nah...



#16 BillBald

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 14:43

This has to be a joke surely.

 

If the team decides that Jenson is no longer performing at the right level, he will be replaced. There's no way that he could hang on to his seat, if they decide to get rid of him. Certainly not by 'blocking' Vandoorne.

 

It seems some people cannot wait for Jenson to retire, I'm really not sure what that's about. My guess is that he will do very well under the new formula, and for the sake of your health, you really shouldn't keep holding your breath! :)



#17 ZionLH

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 15:14

This has to be a joke surely.

 

If the team decides that Jenson is no longer performing at the right level, he will be replaced. There's no way that he could hang on to his seat, if they decide to get rid of him. Certainly not by 'blocking' Vandoorne.

 

It seems some people cannot wait for Jenson to retire, I'm really not sure what that's about. My guess is that he will do very well under the new formula, and for the sake of your health, you really shouldn't keep holding your breath! :)

I think his driving style will play to his advantage in this era defo one to watch next year  :up: has jenson choosen his number yet aint today the deadline  :confused:



#18 Craven Morehead

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 18:06

Boullier & Grosjean would be a better example of a conflict of interest methinks.



#19 demet06

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 19:31

McLaren could always peddle one of them up the pitlane like they did with Perez.



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#20 scheivlak

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 19:36

 

Another driver that is currently part of Buttons management group? Paul Di Resta. I bet when Perez and Paul were fighting for that 2nd Force India seat it was all hugs and laughs by Pauls management group when trying to convince Force India.

 

Care to explain?



#21 spacekid

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 19:40

Hang on - I read the link in the OP. Does Jenson have a financial interest in the management company, or does he actively manage Vandoorne? Because those 2 things are not the same at all, and if it's the former then this is a very misleading thread.

Ultimately the teams hire the drivers, I really don't see what the problem is here.

#22 Peter Perfect

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 20:19

McLaren could always peddle one of them up the pitlane like they did with Perez.

Bit OT but did that actually happen? I know MW said he was trying all he could to get Checo a seat and with him ending up at Force India (a McLaren technical partner) I'd assumed MW had had a fairly big hand in it, but I haven't heard Checo mention anything.

 

In this case I don't think there's any conflict of interest, certainly not anything close to Briatore's situation anyway! How many drivers did he manage that passed through Benetton/Renault? I know there was Alonso and Fisi. Any more? I always thought Wurz got a raw deal for not having him as manager and I'm sure he wasn't the only one.



#23 P123

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 21:09

JB is co-owner of the management company that looks after Vandoorne.  I doubt Vandoorne would have signed up if he felt doing so would hinder his F1 chances.



#24 spacekid

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 21:13

In this case I don't think there's any conflict of interest, certainly not anything close to Briatore's situation anyway! How many drivers did he manage that passed through Benetton/Renault? I know there was Alonso and Fisi. Any more? I always thought Wurz got a raw deal for not having him as manager and I'm sure he wasn't the only one.


Among others, some young chap called Nelson Piquet Jnr. I understand that ended in a bit of a hoo-ha.

#25 Peter Perfect

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 22:29

Among others, some young chap called Nelson Piquet Jnr. I understand that ended in a bit of a hoo-ha.

Ah! Forgot about him!



#26 Mohican

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 22:49

Jarno Trulli always maintained that he was removed from the Renault team by Flavio as he was running too close to darling Fernando. And he was replaced by Fisichella, managed by guess who.

#27 Kingshark

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 22:52

Jarno Trulli always maintained that he was removed from the Renault team by Flavio as he was running too close to darling Fernando.

 

:rolleyes: Or maybe because he was having talks with Toyota without telling Flavio himself.

 

Though I don't seen Button racing beyond 2014 either.


Edited by Kingshark, 23 December 2013 - 22:52.


#28 charly0418

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 23:36

Bit OT but did that actually happen? I know MW said he was trying all he could to get Checo a seat and with him ending up at Force India (a McLaren technical partner) I'd assumed MW had had a fairly big hand in it, but I haven't heard Checo mention anything.

 

In this case I don't think there's any conflict of interest, certainly not anything close to Briatore's situation anyway! How many drivers did he manage that passed through Benetton/Renault? I know there was Alonso and Fisi. Any more? I always thought Wurz got a raw deal for not having him as manager and I'm sure he wasn't the only one.

 

Yes it did, according to media in Mexico Ron Dennis, Bob Fernley and Perez were together negotiating during the US GP



#29 scheivlak

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Posted 23 December 2013 - 23:47

:rolleyes: Or maybe because he was having talks with Toyota without telling Flavio himself.

 

Though I don't seen Button racing beyond 2014 either.

No way - Jarno was very, very keen to continue his contract with Renault! It's easy to see why he preferred a Renault drive....

 

I think Flavio explains it best: "Briatore hopes Trulli exit will motivate Alonso" http://www.autosport...t.php/id/14077/

 

#30 SpaMaster

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Posted 24 December 2013 - 21:41

I am not too worried about this particular case. But I am definitely worried about cases like Grosjean-Boullier. Whatever happened to FIA banning driver manager-team principal conflict of interest in the aftermath of Singapore 2008!? Briatore-Piquet and Briatore- Trulli are reason enough to strictly ban such partnerships. As crooked as it gets, if you think about it.



#31 tkulla

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Posted 25 December 2013 - 00:59

No way - Jarno was very, very keen to continue his contract with Renault! It's easy to see why he preferred a Renault drive....

I think Flavio explains it best: "Briatore hopes Trulli exit will motivate Alonso" http://www.autosport...t.php/id/14077/


And what goes around comes around... Jarno kept his drive at Renault when they wanted to promote Fernando to a race seat because he was managed by Flavio. Jenson, who had out scored him that year, refused to sign a management contract with Flavio according to rumors at the time.

Edited by tkulla, 25 December 2013 - 01:00.


#32 scheivlak

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Posted 25 December 2013 - 16:15

And what goes around comes around... Jarno kept his drive at Renault when they wanted to promote Fernando to a race seat because he was managed by Flavio. Jenson, who had out scored him that year, refused to sign a management contract with Flavio according to rumors at the time.

You make it sound as if it was Jarno who pushed Jenson out which of course wasn't the case.

 

Apart from that, Button's management told the press that they already had a watertight contract with another team when Renault made their announcement about Alonso in July 2002. And indeed, within a few days BAR announced that Button would drive for them in 2003.



#33 PayasYouRace

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Posted 26 December 2013 - 10:02

I still can't see any conflict of interest, especially as we've established that Jenson isn't Vandoorne's manager in a direct sense.



#34 Massa

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Posted 26 December 2013 - 23:36

Jarno Trulli always maintained that he was removed from the Renault team by Flavio as he was running too close to darling Fernando. And he was replaced by Fisichella, managed by guess who.

 

 

It was because trulli didn't want to sign another contract with Renault. When Briatore knew he was talking to Toyota, Briatore did all to drop Trulli. Then, when Barrichello had overtaken Trulli in France at the last corner for the third place, it was the end for Trulli, Briatore was mad, he drop him asap.



#35 Peter Perfect

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Posted 27 December 2013 - 07:16

It was because trulli didn't want to sign another contract with Renault. When Briatore knew he was talking to Toyota, Briatore did all to drop Trulli. Then, when Barrichello had overtaken Trulli in France at the last corner for the third place, it was the end for Trulli, Briatore was mad, he drop him asap.

For anyone who's seen http://en.wikipedia...._Four_Year_Plan Flav's behaviour won't come as a huge surprise.