Jenson Button believes that next year will give him his best opportunity yet of adding to his 2009 Formula 1 world title.
The McLaren driver won three grands prix in 2011 and finished second in the world championship behind Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel. After out-scoring his teammate Lewis Hamilton in seven of the last nine races of the year and signing a new deal during the same period, he now believes he is in a better position than ever before to challenge Red Bull.
"We haven't quite won the World Championship in the last two years, but I have won quite a few races with this team and I feel that our time is coming," Button said. "We are in a very good position. And it couldn't be better really so we are very excited about 2012."
Button said that he has achieved the aims he set when he signed for McLaren ahead of the 2010 season. In that time he has outscored Hamilton 484 points to 467, taken five grand prix wins and achieved the highest position in the championship for a McLaren driver since Hamilton took the 2008 title. He still believes that more improvement is needed, however, in order to knock Vettel off his perch at the top of the championship next year.
"We have spent two years together now. It has flown by, and it is quite scary that it has been two seasons already," Button added. "My aim was to arrive at McLaren and win races, and be with a team that can always give me a chance of winning the World Championship. I feel that we have really improved and I feel that with a tiny bit more improvement we can fight for more victories in 2012."
Although Button does not rate his season as on the same level as his title-winning campaign with Brawn, he does believe that the Japanese Grand Prix marked the strongest race of his career.
"Japan meant a lot to me, because I have got a lot of connections with Japan over the last eight years," he said. "So to have won that grand prix on a circuit that I love; such a high-speed circuit, a circuit that should suit Red Bull, in front of the Japanese fans after all they had been through this year, it was a very special victory."