F1 News, Views and Reviews

Australian GP 2009: Button On Pole For Brawn GP

Jenson Button has slotted the brawn new Brawn BGP001 onto the pole position slot of the albert Park circuit for the 2009 Grand Prix, marking the first time a new team has gained a pole position since Jackie Stewart with Tyrrell.

Button, 29, was largely written off at the end of last season and only a month ago it looked like he would not have a drive for this season.  He will be joined by Rubens Barrichello on the front row of the grid, marking a very special first race for the Brawn team born from the ashes of Honda Racing F1.

In the first session, both Force India’s were out, as were both Toro Rosso’s.  Despite big gains for Force India, they still couldn;t make it into Q2, the 2005 Aussie GP winner Giancarlo Fisichella declared himself bitterly disappointed with the result.

Nelson Piquet Jr. was also out in this first session of qualifying, the Brazilian entering his second season of F1 in a poorly similar way to his first.

The big suprise was that World Champion Lewis Hamilton scraped into the Q2 session in last position, but before he could even put a lap on the board he had to retire as his gearbox was broken.  The Brit’s good form of luck looks like its run out, and with the 5 place grid drop for the gearbox change he will start tomorrow’s race from last position.

Heikki Kovalainen fared no better than his team mate and ended up 14th, going out with Nakajima, Heidfeld, Alonso and Webber all of whom put in stellar laps.  At one point there was just 2 tenths covering the top 9 cars.

The final session proved the Brawn cars’ dominance, they were easily fastest and with the printouts of vehicle weights we can see they were running fuel.

Vettel and Kubica did a great job in breaking the possibly illegal diffuser cars dominance of the top spots with 3rd & 4th  place, followed by Rosberg, Glock and Trulli.  Kubica also declined to run KERS at this event.

The Ferrari’s propped up the table, but they looked fast and potentially could have good levels of fuel.  Kimi Raikkonen did some scorching laps in the F60.

Pos  Driver      Team                      Q1        Q2        Q3     Laps
 1.  Button      Brawn-Mercedes        (B) 1:25.211  1:24.855  1:26.202 19
 2.  Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes        (B) 1:25.006  1:24.783  1:26.505 21
 3.  Vettel      Red Bull-Renault      (B) 1:25.938  1:25.121  1:26.830 21
 4.  Kubica      BMW-Sauber            (B) 1:25.922  1:25.152  1:26.914 19
 5.  Rosberg     Williams-Toyota       (B) 1:25.846  1:25.123  1:26.973 21
 6.  Glock       Toyota                (B) 1:25.499  1:25.281  1:26.975 19
 7.  Massa       Ferrari               (B) 1:25.844  1:25.319  1:27.033 21
 8.  Trulli      Toyota                (B) 1:26.194  1:25.265  1:27.127 20
 9.  Raikkonen   Ferrari               (B) 1:25.899  1:25.380  1:27.163 21
10.  Webber      Red Bull-Renault      (B) 1:25.427  1:25.241  1:27.246 20
11.  Heidfeld    BMW-Sauber            (B) 1:25.827  1:25.504           14
12.  Alonso      Renault               (B) 1:26.026  1:25.605           12
13.  Nakajima    Williams-Toyota       (B) 1:26.074  1:25.607           16
14.  Kovalainen  McLaren-Mercedes      (B) 1:26.184  1:25.726           15
15.  Hamilton    McLaren-Mercedes      (B) 1:26.454  no time             5
16.  Buemi       Toro Rosso-Ferrari    (B) 1:26.503                     10
17.  Piquet      Renault               (B) 1:26.598                     12
18.  Fisichella  Force India-Mercedes  (B) 1:26.677                     10
19.  Sutil       Force India-Mercedes  (B) 1:26.742                      9
20.  Bourdais    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    (B) 1:26.964                     10

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