Jenson Button ecstatic about McLaren's perfect start to 2012
|By Jonathan Noble and Pablo Elizalde||Sunday, March 18th 2012, 08:40 GMT|
Jenson Button was elated after celebrating what he labelled as a very special start to the season following a commanding win in the Australian Grand Prix.
The Briton overtook McLaren team-mate and polesitter Lewis Hamilton at the start and never looked back, leading at the chequered flag ahead of world champion Sebastian Vettel.
It was Button's third win in Australia following victories in 2009 and '10.
The McLaren driver was delighted to start the season in perfect fashion.
"It was very special," said Button. "Starting the year with a win is important. To come away with Lewis's pole yesterday and victory today, I think it puts us in a great position for the next few races and on the right foot, so a big thank you to everyone in the team.
"I am very excited heading to Malaysia but not thinking about that now - I will enjoy this now with friends and family, and tomorrow turn my attention to Malaysia."
Button was leading comfortably until the safety car was deployed with 11 laps to go, and he admitted it was not an ideal situation, although it allowed him to save fuel, which he suggested was crucial for him.
"The biggest worry was the safety car," he said. "When you have a 10-second gap, it is a great place to be, but as soon as the safety car comes out and it is 6pm, it's difficult to keep the temperature in those tyres. That was a big worry for me.
"I was able to keep the heat in the tyres and saved a lot of fuel, which was important for us, and then got a good restart. I was able to do that, which I was very happy about, and was then controlling pace to the end of the race so a pretty amazing day."
Button, who scored his 13th grand prix win today, said his third victory in Australia was probably the most straightforward.
"It's very different to 2010. Compared to 2009, I was on pole [that year]. It was good but the last stint I was struggling as the tyres were working very differently, but this time through the stints the car felt good and there was good balance between the pace at the start of the stint and the pace at the end of stints. It is probably better than any year I have raced in."