Source says Ferrari targeting Button UPDATE
This rumor is downgraded to 'false' today. Ferrari has rubbished suggestions Jenson Button could be set to switch from McLaren.
A source at the famous Italian team reportedly told the News of the World this week that Button, 31, was being sounded out as a replacement for Felipe Massa.
"The Brazilian is now well used to this ritual, as it began almost before he set foot in the Scuderia," said Ferrari's anonymous website columnist The Horse Whisperer, referring to near-constant speculation about Massa's future.
The latest names linked to his race cockpit have been Nico Rosberg and now Briton Button.
"It goes without saying that, yet again, this is just a load of twaddle, to use a polite word for what I really mean to say," added the Ferrari columnist.
Indeed, widespread media reports are now saying Button is in fact set to extend his deal with McLaren for 2012 and beyond.
The Daily Mirror is the latest publication to reveal that the 2009 world champion is set to agree a new two-year contract with a $3 million per season pay rise.
"The deal has to be finalized before the end of July, but may be announced at the British grand prix," said writer Byron Young.
The Mirror report added that German Rosberg, 25, "approached McLaren" about Button's seat but is now expected to stay at Mercedes.06/19/11 (GMM) Ferrari is eyeing Jenson Button as an ideal replacement for Felipe Massa according to a British press report.
A source at the Maranello based team told the News of the World tabloid that there has been "a lot of talk" about 2009 world champion Button, who is currently Lewis Hamilton's teammate at McLaren, joining Ferrari alongside Fernando Alonso.
The news follows Button's claim last week that, despite Martin Whitmarsh saying he would extend the 31-year-old's McLaren deal, he sees "no sense" in signing a new long-term contract.
The Ferrari source said: "They (Ferrari) have already checked to see if he would be available.
"The team realize they need a stronger partner for Fernando Alonso than Felipe Massa if they want to win the title again."