Rubens Barrichello believes his strong recovery drive in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, following his nightmare practice and qualifying, demonstrated that Williams would be wrong to drop him for next year.
The Brazilian was left stuck at the back of the grid for the first time in his career following engine failures in practice that meant he was unable to complete a lap in qualifying. However, Barrichello put in a determined performance to lift himself to 12th place at the checkered flag, and he is convinced that the car had the potential to do better if he had started farther up. Barrichello said he hoped the showing would help convince his bosses that he deserves another season with the team, rather than replacing him with either Kimi Raikkonen, Adrian Sutil or Valtteri Bottas.
"I think I showed them that behind the wheel I am still a boy today, so I hope that gets through to them," Barrichello said. "The race was fantastic in a way. Even if you think that I had done 30 laps all through the weekend, so the setup was not perfect, I still had a good car in the race.
"I fought all the way through, I had nice overtaking and it was very unfortunate that nobody dropped out, because I was fighting for 11th up to the very last lap. And, with the car that we have, I think it was the best we could achieve."
Barrichello said that he could not remember in his 19 years of Formula 1 ever starting at the back of the grid, and he was adamant he would not allow it to happen again.
"I don't think it ever happened," he said. "In 19 years I heard it was the very first time...and luckily the last as well!"
Speaking about the experience of lining up last, Barrichello actually reckoned it was a tougher environment than being right at the front of the grid.
"It is a lot more pressure starting from last than starting from first to be honest. You don't know what is ahead of you, you don't know if cars are going to go slower and so on. I think I did everything I could to get around them and I was 18th by the first lap already. It was a good recovery and I am happy.
"I just have to be happy with the weekend. It was so frustrating to be out of it, but at least I was giving what I wanted from a weekend – which is a pushy race where I fought all the way through."