Jenson Button led the Brawn GP team to victory in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix today, achieving his second Grand Prix win and capping a stunning debut race weekend for the British-based team. Team-mate Rubens Barrichello brought his BGP 001 car home in second position to achieve the first one-two finish for a new team since Mercedes-Benz in 1954.
The two Brawn-Mercedes cars started from the front row of the grid after dominating Saturday’s qualifying session. Jenson had a good start, maintaining his advantage into the first corner and establishing a strong lead over the field. From there he controlled the race, responding well to the first safety car period and recovering from a slow second stop which reduced his lead over Vettel to 1.5 seconds, before taking the chequered flag for a well-deserved victory at the end of the 58-lap race
Rubens had a somewhat more dramatic race with a difficult start off the line dropping him a few places and he subsequently sustained damage to his front wing and nose in a first corner collision. He battled with the damage for the first stint, survived a further collision with Raikkonen, and passed Rosberg on track to be up to fourth by lap 53.
Rubens took his podium finish when an incident between Vettel and Kubica put both cars out of the race with three laps to go promoting Rubens to second and bringing out the safety car which brought the field home.
Drivers Car No. Chassis No. Race Result / Fastest Lap
Jenson Button 22 BGP 001-02 P1 01:28.020
Rubens Barrichello 23 BGP 001-01 P2 01:29.066
Weather Warm and sunny
Temperatures Air: 20-22°C Track: 23-31°C
“What an amazing day This is just a fairytale ending to the first race of our career together at Brawn GP. It may have looked like an easy victory but it really wasn’t easy at all out there today but we brought the car home and that’s all that matters. This win is for me, my family and my team. It’s been a traumatic few months and I want to say a massive thank you to them all for being so strong and never losing belief. This weekend we have achieved everything that we deserve for all of our hard work over the past few months. And what’s so exciting is that there is so much more to come from myself and from this team. I can’t wait to get to Malaysia”
“Well you could say that I had an eventful afternoon I had a lot of mixed emotions during the race and honestly I am so delighted to have achieved second. It was really tough for me at the start as the anti-stall kicked in which cost me a few places off the line and then I was hit heavily from behind going into the first corner and thought my race was over. Thankfully the car survived and I was able to battle my way up to fourth and be in the position to take advantage of the accident between Vettel and Kubica. It just goes to show that you should never give up Congratulations to Jenson for a fantastic win today and my heartfelt thanks to the team for providing us with such a good car. This is the start of a very exciting journey for us.”
“We have worked incredibly hard for this victory today and to see the dedication, commitment and sheer hard work come to fruition with Jenson and Rubens bringing home a one-two finish for Brawn GP at the first race of the season is immensely rewarding. After everything that our team has been through over the past four months, this is quite simply a sensational result. It is just the beginning for us and it wasn’t a perfect race by any means so we will learn from today and continue to improve. We have to keep developing the car throughout the season if we want to challenge for further wins and the championship. I would like to express our sincere thanks to Norbert Haug and Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines who have been so supportive over the past few months and have worked closely with the team to ensure we were in a position to go racing this year. Thanks also to Virgin, Henri Lloyd and all our team partners for having the vision to see what the team could do before today and wanting to be a part of it. It’s difficult to put into words what this win means to our team but I’m sure that I speak for every single one of them, here at the track and back at the factory in Brackley, when I say it has been a wonderful weekend.”