Jenson Button: McLaren front row lockout a 'long time coming'
|By Sam Tremayne||Saturday, March 17th 2012, 11:47 GMT|
Jenson Button says McLaren's qualifying form has been a 'log time coming' after he and Lewis Hamilton locked out the front row for the first time as team-mates.
Button was the only driver able to get within three tenths of Hamilton's best in qualifying - meaning that the front row of a grand prix will not feature a Red Bull for the first time since Monza in 2010.
"It means so much. For the last two years we've been fighting for this: to get a Red Bull off the front row and two McLarens [on it]," Button said.
"Great job by Lewis, myself and the whole team. I think we should congratulate and enjoy this moment, which has been a long time coming."
Button said it had been hard to know what to expect heading into qualifying, and admitted the surprise of finishing clear of the field only added to the sense of occasion.
"You always hope for that [the front row] but you don't know what to expect," he explained. "Compared to Red Bull, qualifying has never been our strong point.
"We knew that the Lotus, the Mercedes and the Red Bull would be competitive but we didn't think we would be on the front row with three tenths in hand, so it is a very special day for us as a team.
"All the way through qualifying we were tweaking the car and just making small improvements here and there and it was really making a big difference.
"We should celebrate today, but tomorrow is obviously different and being first and second just makes your life a little bit easier tomorrow by a few metres.
"I still think the Red Bull will be competitive tomorrow along with the Mercedes and the Lotus so it's not going to be an easy day for us."