Monday , 27 May 2024

Button v Magnussen – Head to Head

Seems we may finally get a decision from McLaren over their 2015 driver line up, so why not compare how the two did this season?

Kevin Magnussen had a great start to 2013, beating Button and finishing on the podium in his debut, but the rest of the season?

First table to compare them, nice and simple, championship position, wins, podiums, poles, fastest laps and points. Not too much to compare here other than points, each had one podium (in Australia) and no wins, poles or fastest laps. Jenson Button did however finish with over double the points of Kevin Magnussen, quite a big gap.

Position Driver Wins Podiums Poles Fastest Laps Points
8 Jenson Button 0 1 0 0 126
11 Kevin Magnussen 0 1 0 0 55

Next table is qualifying, how often each has dropped out of Q1, Q2 and reached Q3 over the season. Not much between them in qualifying, Magnussen has reached Q3 two times more than Button and neither have dropped out of Q1.

Driver Out of Q1 Out of Q2 Into Q3
Jenson Button 0 6 13
Kevin Magnussen 0 4 15

If you start to compare their actual qualifying performance and their fastest laps in the race, it’s more or less 50/50, but as there are an odd number of races Button is ever so slightly ahead. In actual race finishes however, excluding retirements, Button leads by a mile.

Driver Race Finish Started Ahead Qualified Ahead Faster Race Lap
Jenson Button 14 9 10 10
Kevin Magnussen 3 10 9 9

More tables you say? Of course! Kevin Magnussen has a slightly better average qualifying position but Jenson Button a much better average finishing position. Top 10 finishes are almost equal, both have just a single retirement.

Driver Average Qualifying Average Finish Top 10s Retirements
Jenson Button 8.47 7.50 13 1
Kevin Magnussen 8.21 9.39 12 1

One final stat, but not in a table this time. Over the entire season, excluding retirements, Jenson Button gained 15 positions in the races, Kevin Magnussen lost nine.

Overall on pure pace they seem fairly equal, in the races Button is clearly better, but race pace is something that can be improved and Magnussen is young. Whatever happens, I can see why a decision is taking McLaren so long!

About JackStatMan

The F1StatMan, mostly known for coming up with useless F1 related stats about burgers.

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