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F1: The Button/Alonso McLaren axis set to push Mercedes hard

| 17.12.2014

As Formula One teams go, not many in recent memory hold more allurement than the new set-up at McLaren as two of the sport’s pin-ups and most experienced drivers go head-to-head in 2015.

Boasting three world championships between them, Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso are the team with the most sex appeal in the garage ahead of the 2015 season, and the pair will be looking to push each other and Mercedes hard for points.

McLaren CEO Ron Dennis offered little in the way of modesty about his new line-up after it was confirmed in December.

He said: “To sum up, Fernando and Jenson have started a combined total of precisely 500 Grands Prix between them – a mighty aggregate – and have won 47 of them. “I can safely say, therefore, that we now have by an order of magnitude the best driver line-up of any current Formula One team.”

Despite the British team finishing fifth in the constructors’ championship last season, McLaren were consistent top-six finishers and the renewed strength of the line-up makes the 4/6 on a Grand Prix win at any point next season a tempting bet.

Especially given the return to F1 of Honda power units for next season, which McLaren are sure will help bridge the gap to the seemingly unstoppable Mercedes, piloted to glory by Lewis Hamilton.

On an individual basis, two-time champ Alonso is rightly assumed to still hold a slight edge over Button in the cockpit, priced as the 2/5 favourite to accrue more championship points overall and as the Spaniard’s 35-point lead in the final standings over the Brit in a similarly-paced Ferrari car demonstrated last season.

There was no chequered flag for Alonso at the famous Italian team in 2014, but 5/4 says he’ll return to the top step in ’15, while 5/2 is Button’s price for a race win at any point.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.