Button takes long awaited second seasonal win in Belgium

Fernando Alonso (left) and Lewis Hamilton tangle during the first lap at La Source hairpin  in Sunday's Grand Prix of Belgium at Spa-Franchorchamps. Photo courtesy of Sutton Imagesports.

SPA-FRANCHORCHAMPS, Belgium- Following a rather poor showing in the season after his opening season win in Australia last March; Jenson Button finally turned the tables by taking Sunday afternoon his second win  in a lights to flag victory at the Grand Prix of Belgium at the Spa Franchorchamps Circuit. Sebastian Vettel took second after starting in 11th position, while Kimi Raikkonen finished in third.

With the skies clear and no threat of rain, the start needed no excitement as Sauber driver Kamui Kobyaschi sat on the starting line with his brakes extremely hot, with smoke coming up, before the lights went out and the cars headed for the first corner at La Source. Romain Grosjean made an attempt to block Lewis Hamilton from passing and struck the Englishman’s car, sending the Lotus skyward and in the process, hitting Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari. All three cars were out of the race, and Hamilton even took a piece of front wing back to the garage and did not speak to the press. Meanwhile, Kobyachi and his teammate Sergio Perez were involved in the shunt, and the Mexican had to abandon the race as well. The safety car immediately came onto the track, and stayed out for four more laps before the green flag resumed the race. For Alonso, his retirement marked the first time this season that the Spaniard did not finish the race.

Just as the race resumed, Pastor Maldonado parked his Williams at the top of Les Combes and continued his poor luck after he won his first formula one race last April in Spain. However, for Button it was an easy drive and even a 2.6 second lead over the rest of the grid, continued even after an impressive final pit stop at the same time kept him in front to extend his lead to 11 seconds mid race, with the final result to 14.3 seconds over Vettel, becoming the first driver this year to win a race from start to finish.

“It is a special circuit for most drivers, and the way it flows and all the history here and to get a victory here from lights to flag is great because it has not been a great year for me” Beemed Button afterwards, doing an interview from the podium.. “Very special weekend and I would like to thank the team and all of you guys (speaking to the race fans). We will enjoy this before we go to Monza (Italy, next weekend) and hopefully do the same.”

Shell Grand Prix of Belgium- Top ten finishers

1.  Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes

2.  Sebastian Vettel (GER)   Red Bull Racing

3.  Kimi  Raikkonen ( FIN)  Lotus Renault

4.   Nico Hulkenberg (GER)  Force India

5.   Felipe Massa (BRA) Ferrari

6.    Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing

7.   Michael Schumacher (GER) Mercedes

8.    Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Toro Rosso

9.   Daniel   Riccardo (AUS) Toro Rosso

10.  Paul Di Resta (GBR) Force India

World Championship standings- 1. Alonso- 164; 2. Vettel-140; 3.Webber-132; 4. Raikkonen-131; 5.Hamilton-117;6.Button-101; 7.Nico Rosberg-77; 8. Grosjean-76; 9. Perez- 47. 10. Schumacher-35.

Mark Gero

A 12 year veteran writer who has covered race weekends for RIS for three years. Also did the same for motorsport.com.For the last two years, I have been a member of AARWBA.

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Volume 2012, Issue 7, Posted 11:05 AM, 09.02.2012