Dreams do come true for Button and Brawn GP

29 March, 2009

Mar.29 (Grand Prix 247) A well deserved win by Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) who lead from start to finish in the 58 lap race, the first of the season. An incredible 1-2 finish for the new Brawn GP team and an exciting end of the race with a spectacular incident between Kubica and Vettel in second that secured a third step on the podium for Italian Jarno Trulli (Panasonic Toyota Racing) before the Stewards of the race inflicted a 25 seconds penalty to the Toyota driver turning his third place into a 12th place and everyone moving up one the classification. A win for the British Button notches up the 200th win by a British driver.

29 year old Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One team) was contesting his 156th Grand Prix today from pole position. Rubens Barrichello finished in second place in his 272nd Grand Prix. It is an incredible momentum for the new Brawn GP team and drivers after a winter of turmoil. In terms of records, Jenson led from start to finish. He had not led a lap of any race since winning the 2006 Hungarian Grand Prix.

This is the fourth time that a new team has won its first race: Giuseppe (Nino) Farina for Alfa Romeo in 1950 at Silverstone, Fangio for Mercedes in 1954 in Reims, and Jody Scheckter for Wolf in 1977 in Argentina all came before. Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) is the first Swiss driver to score points (two) since Marc Surer at the 1985 Italian Grand Prix for Brabham-BMW (4th).

Overall, a good start for pole man Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) has put his car in pole and the two Brawn GP were on the front row for the start while reigning world champion was in his career-worst starting position. The race became a fantastic, storming race from Lewis to charge from 18th on the grid to third at the finish. Always on the attack, he profited from the opening-lap melee and an aggressive first stint on low fuel and option tyres to slot into the top 10 by lap five.? The Kers system may have helped the Ferraris at the start of the race. As the pit stops? started on lap 10, Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) and Sebastien Vettel (Red Bull Racing) Vettel (Red Bull Racing) were running a quite lonely race in the front with?third, Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams F1) 31.6s behind.

First race incident: on lap 18, Barrichello, Glock and Sebastien Buemi? (Toro Rosso) stop just ahead of Jenson Button’s (Brawn GP Formula One Team) pit stop on lap 19 as the safety car was deployed after Nakajima?s accident. As a result, Jenson Button, who had led every lap so far in the race was still in the lead under the? safety car.At the restart, the distance between Vettel and Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) was very tight but slowly grew gain.

As Massa and Hamilton were fighting for? 10th position, Massa found trouble on the 46th lap and slowed down. It is Ferrari’s only failure to score points in a race since Singapore 2008.

Six laps before the end, Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One team) was leading (1.29.868) and the difference with Vettel was down to 1.6s and to 5.0s to Kubica in third.

Towards the end emotion was running high and tension mounted as Hamilton passed Glock and Nico Rosberg with? four laps to go. An accident changed the course of the race. Kubica and Vettel had contact and Kubica ended up in the wall, causing the safety car to be deployed as Vettel crawled along with three wheels left. The accident secured a one-two finish for Brawn as Barrichello moved up while Trulli should have ended third ahead of Hamilton, Glock and Alonso. But it was without counting on?a mistake by the Italian. Lewis had passed Jarno Trulli during the second Safety Car period whilst?the Italian had a short off; however, Lewis let Trulli repass afterwards. After the race, the stewards gave Trulli a 25sec time penalty which meant that Lewis was third.Timo Glock (Panasonic Toyota) finished fourth ahead of Fernando Alonso (Ing Renault F1 Team) in fifth while Rosberg ended up sixth. Sebastien Buemi? (Toro Rosso) for his first race scored the two first points of his career. Sebastien Bourdais (Scuderia Toro Rosso) also scored the first point of his season.

There was perfect weather with air temperature 21 Centigrade at 5pm, for the start of the 58 lap / 307.574km Grand Prix, on the 16 corners of the first track of the season, the 60th edition of the Formula 1 Championship, the 2009 Ing Australian Grand Prix. Jenson Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) was on pole and the two Brawn GP were on the front row for the start and reigning world champion Hamilton was in his career-worst starting position.

The two Toyotas started from the pits after being excluded fro qualifying for a rear wing that flexed too much. Rubens Barrichello (Brawn GP Formula One Team) gave way, fell from second position to seventh and Nick Heidfeld (BMW Sauber F1 Team) dropped from 9th to 17th with a damaged right rear tyre as Jenson Button (Brawn GP? Formula One Team) keeps the lead ahead of Vettel and Massa who jumped from sixth to third. Heidfeld, Sutil, Webber come back to the pits for a? pit stop.

This Grand Prix is also the first ever lap 1 retirement in his career for Kovalainen with a damaged front suspension as Piquet and team mate
Lewis Hamilton (Vodafone McLaren Mercedes) start fighting on the track. After seven laps, Lewis Hamilton (Vodafone McLaren Mercedes) is charging, up to eleventh already.

On lap 8, Rosberg closes 0.2s behind Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) in fifth and then Rosberg suceeds passing Kimi on lap 9 into turn 1 and now ranks fifth.

The first pitstops are completed by Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) and Jarno Trulli (Panasonic Toyota Racing Trulli (Panasonic Toyota Racing) on lap 10 as well as Bourdais. Felipe Massa (Ferrari) Massa (Ferrari) who was 5 seconds slower than Vettel on the lap before he pitted is the next in the pit on lap 11, with a 7.4 long pitstop. As for him Hamilton comes in on lap 11 for a long 12s pitstop. Kubica pits from P3 on lap 12. As a result Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) and Sebastien Vettel (Red Bull Racing) are running quite a lonely race in the front. In third Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams F1) followed by Rubens Barrichello (Brawn GP Formula One Team) Barrichello (Brawn GP Formula One Team) in fourth and fifth Kazuki Nakajima (AT&T Williams) while Piquet is sixth and Sebastien Buemi 7th for his first? race with the Toro Rosso, ahead of Giancarlo Fisichella (Force India F1 Team).

Nakajima then crashes in a dangerous place at turn 5. It is Nakajima’s first retirement since Canada 2008 (12 races ago). His Dad’s (Saturo)?best finish was 4th in Silverstone 1987 and he participated in? the Australian GP 20 years ago. On lap 18, Barrichello, Glock and Sebastien Vettel (Red Bull Racing) Buemi (Toro Rosso) stop just?ahead of Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team)pitstop on lap 19 as the safety car is deployed only then. As a result, Jenson Button (Brawn GP? Formula One Team) keeps the lead while all other cars who have not stopped to complete their pitstop: Alonso, Fisichella, Piquet.

Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) who has led every lap so far in the race is still in the lead under safety car, with Sebastien Vettel (Red Bull Racing) and Massa third. Kubica is in fourth ahead of Piquet and Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari). Sixth is Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams F1) and seventh Nelson Piquet (Ing Renault F1 Team) ahead of Jarno Trulli? (Panasonic Toyota Racing) and Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) in 9th ahead of 10th Rubens Barrichello (Brawn GP Formula One Team).

At the restart on lap 24, Sebastien Vettel (Red Bull Racing) fights again Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) and is only 0.4s behind him.Massa 1.5s away. Piquet loses his race stopping at turn 1 and is the third competitor out of the race. Piquet did not finish 9 out of the 18 races last season. All cars attacking each other make this restart very hectic. The leader on lap 28 is Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team). He shows the fastest lap with a strong 1.28.54.

At lap 31, twenty laps after his first stop, Massa is the first car to complete the second stop in 10.9s. Then other competitors follow on lap 35, Mark Webber (Red Bull Racing). Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) is the leader with Vettel in second place and Kubica in third ahead of Kimi, Jarno Trulli (Panasonic Toyota Racing), Rubens Barrichello (Brawn GP Formula One Team), Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso), Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams F1) in eighth head of two world champions: Lewis Hamilton (Vodafone McLaren Mercedes) and Fernando Alonso (Ing Renault F1 Team). On lap 36, the fastest lap goes to Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber F1 Team) with 1.27.988.

On lap 42, The race is quite calm except for three cars having dropped from the race. There has also not been any change of leader since the start of the race. Vettel in second place laps 5.4s behind the leader and now the second Brawn is in third place although he has not completed his second pitstop but Massa and Kubica have. Lewis Hamilton is in the pits on lap 43.

As for him, Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) stops for the third time after lap 10, 39 and now lap 43 stops again. On the following lap, he spins and hits the wall unlike Glock who managed to continue at turn 15.

Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams) completed his second routine stop on lap 44. As for him, German Vettel stops on lap 45 for his second pitstop after having been attacked by Barrichello and continues while the two Brawns are 1 and 3rd but have not stopped. As Massa and Hamilton are fighting for 10th position, Massa seems to be in trouble on the 46th lap and slows down. It is Ferrari’s only failure to score points in a race since Singapore 2008. Australia is not Massa?s favorite race anyway: He only scored points once in his career in Australia (2007).

Jenson Button (Brawn GP Formula One team) chooses this moment to stop for his second stop on the 47th lap (after 19th lap) and reemerges ahead of Vettel in second. If Vettel remains in this position for his new Red Bull team, it will be Red Bull?s best ever finish in F1: 3rd (Monaco 2006, Nurburgring 2007, Montreal 2008)

On lap 51, Barrichello and Alonso pit for the second time. Jenson? Button (Brawn GP Formula One Team) (Brawn GP Formula One team) is leading? (1.29.868) and the difference with Vettel is 1.6 (1.30.154) and from Kubica 5.0 who laps in 1.29.297.

Six laps before the end emotion is strong and tension is wild in the field at all levels:
Hamilton passes Glock and Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams) with four laps to go. Kubica and Vettel who touch each other and Kubica loses it and hit?s the? wall causing the safety car to be deployed as Vettel comes back to the? stands on three wheels. For a while Lewis Hamilton seems to be on the podium, but Jarno Trulli gets gets temporarily the honour.? The Italian made?a mistake and had a short off: Lewis had passed Jarno Trulli during the second Safety Car period; However, Lewis let Trulli repass afterwards.

After the race, the stewards called the two drivers in and replayed the video evidences and gave Trulli a 25sec time penalty which meant that Lewis was third and secured a good six points for his team while Ferrari left the australian race site without points for this first race of the Championship.

As a consequence while his team mate is sent to 12th place, Toyota Timo Glock finishes in fourth securing a good finish to the team and five points to the team. Alonso is the fastest Renault in sixth place. Nico Rosberg (AT&T Williams) secures three points for the team while rookie Switzerland Buemi scores two points for his first race.

The Stewards also fined the team?Red Bull?US$50,000 US for not calling back their driver suffering from serious mechanical difficulties (on three wheels) as a result of the collision which he caused with Kubica and Vettel for causing a collision that forced Kubica off the track and gave him a drop of 10 grid penalties at the next race.Toyota has filed an appeal against FIA stewards’ decision to strip Jarno Trulli of his podium finish in Sunday’s Australian grand prix.

Sunday, 29 March – Race Results

Pos Driver Team Laps Time Grid Pts
1 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 58 1:34:15.784 1 10
2 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 58 +0.8 secs 2 8
3 Jarno Trulli Toyota 58 +1.6 secs 20 6
4 Timo Glock Toyota 58 +4.4 secs 19 5
5 Fernando Alonso Renault 58 +4.8 secs 10 4
6 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 58 +5.7 secs 5 3
7 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 58 +6.0 secs 13 2
8 Sebastien Bourdais STR-Ferrari 58 +6.2 secs 17 1
9 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 58 +6.3 secs 16
10 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 58 +7.0 secs 9
11 Giancarlo Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 58 +7.3 secs 15
12 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 57 +1 Lap 8
13 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 56 Accident 3
14 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 55 Accident 4
15 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 55 Differential 7
Ret Felipe Massa Ferrari 45 Suspension 6
Ret Nelsinho Piquet Renault 24 Spin 14
Ret Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 17 Accident 11
Ret Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 0 Accident damage 12
DSQ Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 58 +2.9 secs 18

Hamilton finished fourth, was promoted to third after Trulli was penalised for passing him under the safety car, but was ultimately disqualified after stewards decided he and McLaren had provided ‘misleading’ evidence relating to the incident.

 

 


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