Jenson Button and Brawn GP Are World Champions
I can hardly type this article in between my absolute tears of joy! To any of you out there who thought that Jenson couldn’t do it, to those of you who thought he wasn’t worthy, the 2009 Brazilian Grand Prix has proved you wrong.
That was the greatest Formula One race I have ever had the pleasure of watching and it was I have ever seen Jenson Button drive.
It all could have gone so differently. Jenson lined up in 14th position, with the dangerously fast Vettel just one place behind him thanks to a Liuzzi penalty.
My heart thumped as I remembered the usual chaos that Brazil brings, and this year was no different!
As Rubens made a beautiful start off the line I watched on the edge of my seat as Jenson carefully snaked around turn one and then turn two.
However, just behind Jenson, three cars including Vettel and Kovalainen were side by side, the two cars tapped each other and Kovalainen was sent spinning. Fisichella darted off the track to keep out of the early tangle, but there more action else where.
The camera cut to a Toyota smashing off the track, then we saw another car in ruin and finally the broken remains of Sutil’s Force India. As if this wasn’t enough, a small (but hilarious) fight broke out between Trulli and Sutil.
The safety car was out but Jenson had fantastically managed to pass Alguersuari and was up to eighth! As Rubens lapped comfortably at the front, Raikkonen and Kovalainen took to the pits.
In a rush to get the McLaren out ahead of the Ferrari, the silver car ended up leaving it’s box with the fuel hose still attached! Fuel was spluttering everywhere and when they hit Kimi’s exhausts we got a fire display!
The Ferrari eventually won the pit lane race and it was up to the Brawn GP mechanics to free Kovalainen of his optional addition.
It soon became clear when the absolute madness subsided that Alonso had been the third casualty of Sutil and Trulli’s tussle.
The safety car came back into the pits on lap four and Jenson was all over Grosjean for seventh. The Brit put a magnificently brave manoeuvre on the Frenchman and after swapping positions through turns five and six it was the Brawn man who came out on top.
Vettel had made a fantastic start as well and soon dispatched Grosjean to move ever closer to his title rival. Jenson meanwhile was moving up to the back of Nakajima. In another daring and exciting moment Jenson had gained another place after taking the Japanese driver into turn one.
Jenson’s next task was to pass Kobayashi and this would not be a walk in the park. Of course I realize I’m neglecting Rubens at the moment. The Brazilian was doing exactly what he needed to when on lap seven he went fastest of all.
However, Webber was fast as well and was looking very threatening! Back to Jens now and despite being all over the Toyota in front, he simply couldn’t get by.
By lap 16 Jenson had set the fastest lap of 1:14:293 and Jens was beginning to be backed into the clutches of Nakajima and Vettel.
Rubens darted into the pits for his first stop on lap 21. This would prove to be a key moment as unfortunately the Brazilian was released into terrible traffic in eighth position.
Rubens day went from bad to worse when Vettel capitalized on the heavier Brawn and took eighth place. Rubens then fell back into the clutches of Hamilton, and after a pit stop from Kubica rejoined the Pole ahead of Rubens it looked really bad!
Jenson was all over Kobayashi and complaining of foul play from the Toyota man. Still on lap 24 he finally managed to dispatch his rival and moved into second (thanks to pit stops ahead of him).
Jens now had to absolutely push and he knew it. He radioed in to say "let’s go! Let’s go!", really showing his emotions.
Meanwhile we got some great overtaking action from Kobayashi and Nakajima. Webber pitted on lap 26 for 8.3 seconds and rejoined in first place. Poor old Rosberg made Jenson’s day soon after by retiring with gear issues.
Jenson’s first stop came on lap 42. He stopped for 7.5 seconds and rejoined in 10th place. Rubens had made his way up to fourth now but had Hamilton all over him.
Soon after Jenson’s stop Nakajima crashed out as a victim to Kobayashi’s now visually dangerous driving. The Japanese rookie was darting from left to right in a lower formula style.
Jenson was again on form when from eighth he took Buemi into turn one and got himself into seventh! Vettel pitted on lap 37 for 9.2 seconds and thanks to a slight wheel issue rejoined behind Jens.
By lap 40 Webber led, Rubes was second and Jenson had got up to sixth. Four laps later Jenson was up to fourth thanks to stops in front of him.
Rubens took to the pits for what we thought would be his last stop with 21 laps left. He took on 6.3 seconds of fuel and rejoined in sixth.
Webber was in one lap later and rejoined in first. With 17 tense laps left, Jenson came in and completed a lovely 6.0 second stop. The Brit rejoined in sixth but was instantly overtaken by Kovalainen.
Vettel stopped just one lap later than this and had done enough to rejoin comfortably ahead of Jenson. The young German drove a blinder today, but he wasn’t the only one to do so!
Rubens was in third, but Jenson was at that moment the World Champion. The Brazilian Brawn man must have sunk into his seat when with just 12 laps left, Kovalainen pitted and promoted Jens to sixth.
It wasn’t going to get any better for Rubes either as during a fight with Hamilton for that last podium position, he suffered a puncture! This really spoilt an otherwise fantastic race as Rubens had no choice but to pit and take on new tyres.
This action meant that it was all over and all Jens had to do was finish the next eight laps. He did and by finishing in fifth, Jenson Button won the Formula One World Drivers Title for 2009. Rubens did his bit as well by finishing eighth and the Constructors Title went to Brawn GP.
Many doubted my Formula One hero’s talent (myself included at some stages), but today Jenson Button has proved to everyone that he truly deserves his title.
Ten years ago a young playboy named Jenson Button scored his first ever Championship points driving for Williams at the Brazilian Grand Prix. Now, older, wiser, and hairier, that young man from Somerset is the World Champion.
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