Williams has appointed 2009 world champion Jenson Button as a senior advisor to the team.
The winner of 15 grands prix will support and aid the development of the team’s race drivers George Russell and Nicholas Latifi, and Williams’ junior academy talent. He will also fulfil media and marketing duties for the team, while continuing his separate role as a pundit for Sky television.
Button spent a single season at Williams in 2000. Although he was replaced by Juan Pablo Montoya at the end of the year, he went on to enjoy a successful career, winning races for Honda, Brawn and McLaren.
He came close to returning to his original team in the mid-noughties. In 2004 and 2005 Button was involved in contractual disputes over potential moves from BAR to Williams. But he stayed put and never returned to the team which gave him his F1 debut until now.
Button retired from Formula 1 racing at the end of 2016, but made a single start in 2017 as a substitute for Fernando Alonso at McLaren in the Monaco Grand Prix. He went on to race GT cars, winning the Japanese Super GT championship in 2018 sharing a Honda NSX with Naoki Yamamoto, and competed in the British GT championship last year.
His arrival at Williams comes in the midst of management changes at the team following its sale by the founding Williams family to Dorilton last year. Jost Capito will take over as the team’s CEO next month.
“Bringing Jenson back on board is another positive step to help us move forward as a team both on and off track,” said Capito. “Jenson has always been a friend of the team and so it is great to welcome him back into the Williams family.
“Back in 2000, Sir Frank saw the promising talent Jenson had as a driver and gave him his first opportunity in F1. He more than fulfilled that initial promise throughout a glittering career that culminated in world championship glory.
“More recently, he has shown his acumen in both the business and broadcasting worlds and remains a widely respected figure in the paddock. All this experience will add another layer to our transformation both technically and as a business.”
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