Jenson Button and Jessica Michibata in 'amicable' split as they have 'discussions over F1 driver's £35m fortune
Jenson Button and wife Jessica Michibata's separation was completely "amicable", a spokesperson for the racing driver said.
The ex-Formula One world champion and underwear model Jessica wed last December after five years of dating, but the pressures of their jobs, keeping them in different parts of the world, has taken its toll.
"Jenson and Jessica have decided to go their separate ways and it is very amicable. There is no-one else involved," the 35-year-old star's representative said on Tuesday.
Now attention turns to Jenson's estimated £35m fortune as it is reported there was no prenuptial agreement set in place.
"Jenson and Jessica did not have any financial arrangement before their marriage," a source close to the pair told 3m360
"There are ongoing discussions between them about money, but it's too early to say how it will pan out."
The last pictures the couple shared of each other on their Instagram accounts were over seven weeks ago, with Jessica quitting Twitter completely in October.
While their last public appearance was at the American Grand Prix in Texas at the end of October.
Only last week Jenson, 35, was bemoaning an extension of the gruelling F1 calendar, saying: “It’s difficult for any mechanic or engineer to have a relationship right now, so 21 races is going to be tough. I hope it doesn’t grow in 2017.”
He had previously revealed the trouble he and Jessica had spending any time together when he admitted: “We don’t see each other now any more than before we were married.”
The former playboy and the top Japanese-Argentine model, 31, had been dating for five years before marrying.
Jessica spends most of her time in Tokyo where she shares a modest flat with her mother, while hundreds of miles away in Monaco, Jenson spends a lot of time alone in his ‘bachelor’ pad.
He said in an interview earlier this year: “Jessie still works a lot in Japan. She enjoys her job, she models, she had a television show and has done a Japanese film.
“She enjoys working, which is great, but it obviously means that we don’t see each other very often.”
And he admitted that his hectic schedule meant he wasn’t able to give Jessica dates when they could meet up.
He added: “I’m travelling so much with racing that I can’t say: ‘I’m going to have a weekend off Formula 1 and come to Japan to see you,’ It just doesn’t happen like that with sport.”
“She’ll come to half the races but when I’m at a race, I’m not the same person as when I am not at a race,” he admitted.
And revealingly he added: “I have to be selfish. I have to be focused. I am a very different person, and Jessie knows that, and she understands that, as do most of my friends and family. I can be a bit snappy over a race weekend.
“I just need my apartment to be simple, easy, so I can come in, do my thing, and leave again, pack and repack and leave. It’s been my life for 16 years now – you get used to travelling the circus.”
The McLaren driver, from Frome, Somerset, and Jessica were in Hawaii last Christmas when they married at a ceremony in Maui.