Jenson Button has won the 2009 Formula One drivers championship after finishing fifth at the Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos.
The 29-year-old Briton finished ahead of both his championship rivals Rubens Barrichello and Sebastian Vettel giving him an unassailable lead in the championship with just one race remaining. Red Bull’s Mark Webber won the race with BMW’s Robert Kubica finished second. Lewis Hamilton finished third. Starting from a grid position of 14th, Button made steady progress up the field after a series of impressive overtaking maneuvers. The result also means that Button’s team, Brawn GP have claimed the constructors’ championship. After the race, Button told the BBC: “It’s amazing. After the last few races I’ve had, this makes up for it. It was such an awesome race. “21 years ago I jumped into a car and I loved winning. I never expected to be world champion in Formula One but I’ve done it today.” The race was full of incident from the start with Toyota’s Jarno Trulli and Force India’s Adrian Sutil nearly coming to blows at the side of the track after the pair collided on lap one. The accident also took out Renault’s Fernando Alonso. A lap later, Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari was caught in a flash fire when Heikki Kovalainen sped out from his pit stop with a fuel hose still attached to his car. Barrichello, who started from pole, managed to avoid the chaos on lap one and was leading until his first pit stop on lap 21.
Massa risks dispute with new teammate Alonso
Formula One musical chairs begins in earnest
Stoner wins as Rossi closes on MotoGP title
But the Brazilian lost places during the middle part of the race, while his team-mate Button was making up ground picking off Renault’s Romain Grosjean, Kazuki Nakajim — who was making his first appearance for Williams this season — and Sebastien Buemi in faultless fashion. Any chance of Barrichello taking the championship to the final weekend in Abu Dhabi died eight laps from the end when lying in fourth place he suffered a puncture. He eventually finished down in eighth. Sebastian Vettel, who started down in 16th place did his best to try and keep his title hopes alive and eventually finished fourth. But it was too little for the German as Button, after a series of poor finishes in recent races finally found the form he showed earlier in the season.