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2009 F1 Season: Jensen Button and Brawn GP, where did these guys come from?

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British racing fans have a new reason to watch Formula One this season, despite the low point that was reached when last year’s champion got caught up in an embarrassing scandal with the rest of the McLaren team, putting a cloud over the capital of motor racing. Well out with the new and in with the old, because Great Britain has a new favorite son. Jensen Button, the driver who couldn’t buy a win, and took a pay cut to ride in the Brawn GP chassis for 2009 has just set a record winning 6 of the first 7 races of the season after finishing first at the Turkish Grand Prix this past Sunday.

This is quite a turnaround for Button, who has driven Benettons, Renaults and quite a few Hondas. His previous highlights included finishing 3rd in the points behind the wheel of a BAR in 2004 before he had to wait until 2006 for his first win, also coming in a Honda this time at the Hungaroring. Until the start of this season, Jensen just wasn’t as fast as the rest of the Formula 1 field. So where did all this speed suddenly come from?

Continued after the jump.

2009 F1 Season: Jensen Button and Brawn GP, where did these guys come from?

However credit must also be given to the great racing strategist, Ross Brawn. Since taking full control of the ex-Honda F1 team, the Brawn GP squad has been unstoppable. Although we found out not invulnerable, with Rubens Barichello parking his Brawn GP car before all 58 laps were run. At the end of the race you could hear Brawn GP’s number 1 driver thanking the team for their efforts, and thanking the man for building this race winning car.

2009 F1 Season: Jensen Button and Brawn GP, where did these guys come from?

The combination of Button and Brawn has been around since 2007 after Ross Brawn joined Honda from Ferrari. Over the past two years the duo just couldn’t find the right combination of power and agility to make Button a race winning driver, but Brawn was so sure about the team’s 2009 entry that when Honda announced that they were leaving the sport, Ross Brawn personally took the reigns and hasn’t had to look back yet. This kind of instantaneous success is enough to make any race fan reconsider whether Ferrari’s F1 dominance in the 1990s was due more to the man behind the wheel, or the man sitting in the pit box.

2009 F1 Season: Jensen Button and Brawn GP, where did these guys come from?


5 comments:

I’m from the UK & I love F1 but no more! I do not like JB & never have & never will. Now that Brawn GP are dominating F1 so far this season no one is complaining. I wonder if it were Ferrari ( & Schuy of old) who were dominating would folk find it boring & preditable as Ferrari were always accused of, hmmm. ???

Oh no that’s because JB is British & not a German! So I wonder whose going to jump on the JB & RB bandwagon!

Unlike Hamilton or Alonso, Button may seem like just regular race car driver. He first drove in Formula One in the 2000 Season with the Williams team. Button won his first Grand Prix in Hungary, on 6 August 2006 after 113 races. Not so promising, but this season is this guy’s time to shine

Just a little backgrounder about our F1 new favorite. Jenson Alexander Lyons Button is former Rallycross driver John Button, well-known in the UK for his so-called Colorado beetle Volkswagen. He was named after the car marque Jensen. After Honda’s withdrawal from the sport in December 2008, he was left without a drive for the 2009 season until Ross Brawn led a management buyout of the team in late February 2009 and Button suddenly found himself in a highly competitive, Mercedes-engined car. Now, is payback time.

Well to say that Brawn has dominated this season sounds like an overstatement. But their pace is likely quite real and for three key reasons: 1, they hired Ross Brawn (best of the best and chief engineer at Benneton and Ferrari while M. Schumacher was winning all along); 2, Honda began working on this car 19 months ago. They forsook continued development of last year’s car early in that season to put additional resources on this year’s car; 3, Alonso says the pace is real. He is currently the best driver in the championship that everyone should know.

Well I think Ross’ Brawn GP 001 has a helluva lot more than a superior defuser propelling it to 1st & 2nd on the Aussie GP grid! Part of the reason the Earth Dream team had Global Nightmares in 2008 is because Brawn was busting his tail designing the 2009 car. He found something more than a defuser IMO... Good for him.

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