Button is the world champion!
Jenson Button becomes the 2009 F1 champion following dramatic Brazilian GP as Brawn GP celebrates double title success
An elated Jenson Button has successfully wrapped up the 2009 F1 drivers' title following a dramatic Brazilian Grand Prix – admitting afterwards that it was a dream come true.
The Briton went into the event leading team-mate Rubens Barrichello by 14 points and was on the back foot after only qualifying down in 14th place – with his team-mate starting from pole.
However, casting aside criticism levied at him from those who said he was simply stuttering to the title, Button produced a storming performance to work his way through the field – surviving a number of incidents on the opening lap to quickly climb up to ninth place.
From there, Button produced a number of impressive overtaking manoeuvres to climb up to fifth place at the finish and secure an unassailable championship lead after Barrichello could only manage eighth.
Indeed, the Brazilian now drops to third in the standings behind Sebastian Vettel, who came home ahead of Button in the race in fourth.
"It's really amazing... my voice has gone!” the new champion told the BBC after climbing from his car. “After the last few races, this one makes up for it. It was awesome. I'm world champion, baby!
"The last few races have been a bit stressful for me, especially qualifying. But that race today, to me, was worthy of becoming world champion. Kobayashi is absolutely crazy, very aggressive. It was a great race really enjoyable. That was the perfect way to do it."
“Twenty-one years ago, I jumped into a kart and I loved winning - but I never expected to be world champion. You think that racing drivers in F1 are different, but we've done it today."
Button also helped Brawn GP to wrap up the constuctors' title, with the team having required just a single point to put the title out of Red Bull Racing's reach
Barrichello grabbed Pole despite the Rain
Rubens Barrichello gives the home fans reason to cheer in Brazil with a popular pole position for Brawn GP.
Rubens Barrichello said he was thrilled to secure pole position for his home round of the F1 season in Brazil, although the Brawn GP man was quick to point out that nothing is yet won when it comes to securing vital points from the weekend.
Barrichello went into the weekend trailing team-mate Jenson Button by 14 points in the standings, but was given a boost when the Briton failed to make it past the second phase of qualifying and could only set the 14th quickest time.
Barrichello himself only just made it through to Q3 after running on wet tyres throughout the second part of the session but he produced the quickest time when it really mattered to put his car on the front of the grid for race day.
“I am very proud of what we achieved today,” he said. “We were on the borderline in Q2 and we should have gone for intermediates, but we were lucky enough just to make it. I knew the car was competitive. I am keeping my feet on the ground as we have won nothing just yet. We did fantastic today. It is amazing. It is going to be a great night of sleep but we still have to get everything tomorrow.
“It's obviously great to start from the front - it is a number that goes to the records. What it means to me is that I am doing my job the way I have to. Be as fast as I can, at the front. I am not watching what's going on on the side. I am just concentrating, focussing on mine, so like I said, I will race as hard as I can to win the race and when the race is finished I will just go on the radio and see where Jenson and Sebastian [Vettel] finish but it is a great start to the weekend and I am looking very much forward to tomorrow.”
Barrichello admitted that no-one would have predicted that he would secure pole with Button and Sebastian Vettel down in 14th and 16th before the lottery that emerged in qualifying, although he questioned whether or not the session should have run to its conclusion following Tonio Liuzzi's accident in Q2.
“We were not expecting the rain that came down,” he said. “The worst time of qualifying was when Liuzzi went off. We shouldn't have restarted qualifying at that time. On that straight, when he went off, I was in fourth gear. You don't have much pleasure, because of the visibility plus the fact that you are aquaplaning, so you just don't know what's going to happen next. But then when the rain came down, it was a good session at the end of Q2 and Q3.
“I'm sorry for all you guys that you had to wait. I had to wait but I had the pleasure of driving the car after that. It was very much a situation that we need to learn for tomorrow if that's what's going to happen tomorrow in terms of rain.”