Jenson Button could so easily have now been at the wheel of a BMW-Sauber.
The Swiss team's founder, Peter Sauber, revealed in his latest column for the newspaper Blick that he tried to employ the Briton at the end of 2002.
"Button entered formula one in 2000 as a super-talent," Sauber, who sold the Hinwil outfit to BMW at the end of 2005, told the Swiss publication.
"Somehow after that however he always managed to find the right team at the wrong time. His star was faded," he explained.
It was after two lacklustre seasons as Benetton/Renault that Flavio Briatore dumped Button for Fernando Alonso, and Button was snapped up by BAR's David Richards.
That team went on to become Honda and now the championship leaders Brawn, but Sauber revealed: "At the end of 2002 I tried to get Button to Hinwil. Unfortunately it didn't work."
Sauber said he rates the 29-year-old very highly, but also likes Button because he is a "nice guy".