Jenson Button: The Best Races from the Most Underrated F1 Driver

Courtesy Daily Star

2016 was indeed been an eventful year for Formula One. On the track, things were heated up as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg fought tooth and nail for the title. Well, Nico won only to announce retirement a week later. However, it was the earlier announcement by former world champion Jenson Button that he was retiring that posed a lot of questions.

While Button, the 2009 F1 champion, has said he will remain with McLaren till 2018 as a reserve driver and ambassador, most fans continued complaining about how the Briton is treated. In 2015, there was still speculation about whether Button would get a seat in the newly cobbled McLaren-Honda partnership but at the last minute, he was retained to partner Fernando Alonso.

It is understandable for Button fans to ask if the calm driver would not have won more titles with the right car. However, that is water under the bridge now. Why not take a look at some of the greatest races the Briton produced on the track? This is the only way to remember his prowess:

1.     2009 Brazilian GP, Interlagos

Driving for Brawn GP, Button only managed to qualify 14th and this seemed to put his title push in doubt. Well, the Briton surprised everyone by driving through the field and eventually finishing 5th. It was one of the best drives by Button and he was able to ensure his then teammate, Rubens Barrichello, did not get too close in the title chase.

2.     2000 Brazilian GP, Interlagos

Another notable race still took place at the Interlagos and Button, who was only trying out in his 2nd race in Formula One, qualified 9th. He went on to finish 6th and it was obvious many teams had already started noticing the lanky driver.

3.     2004 Malaysia GP, Sepang International Circuit

This will no doubt be a race that Button will remember for a long time. It was at Sepang that Button climbed the rostrum after 4 years of trying. There was no gainsaying Button was a good driver but at Sepang, he qualified 6th and finished 3rd, cementing his place as one of the younger drivers to look out for then.

4.     2006 Hungarian GP, Hungaroring

This was a game changer even by Button’s then rising standards. At the Hungarian GP, the Briton qualified 4th but was penalized due to engine changes and had to start 14th. Well, he drove in the wet in a style reminiscent of Senna to clinch the 1st position. This was on a track where even Schumacher struggled. To put it simply, this was the breakthrough moment he needed and his Honda had given it to him.

5.     2009 Australian GP, Albert Park

When Honda withdrew in 2008, Button and the team were left with nowhere to turn to until Brawn GP came along. The new car leveraged the double diffuser that is now common in all F1 cars to stay ahead of the field and at Melbourne, who better to do the honors for the new team than Button? He took pole position and converted it to a win.

Jenson Button is indeed one of the greatest drivers whose potential Formula One never got to fully admire.

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