Date:Tuesday July 24 2012
Following months of disappointment, McLaren's Jenson Button finally had cause to celebrate in Germany.
Since his second place finish at the Chinese Grand Prix in April, Button has struggled with his McLaren, finishing in the points just three times in the next six races and finishing no higher than eighth.
The 2009 Formula One World Champion would have been feeling the pressure, especially after a poor showing in his home race at Silverstone last time out.
But McLaren came to Germany with a new upgrade package and in the dry at least both he and team-mate Lewis Hamilton looked quick.
Button and Hamilton topped the timing sheets in free practice one, before damp conditions played their part in proceedings.
In free practice three, Button was in the unfamiliar position of finding himself dead last on a Saturday morning. But the McLaren had decided to concentrate on long dry runs, which explained why he was 4.9 seconds off of the pace set by Fernando Alonso.
So into qualifying and McLaren must have been optimistic, until the rain came and the McLaren appeared to struggle in the wet conditions. Hamilton qualified eighth 3.565 seconds off the pace, but Button didn't fair much better, in fact he was just 0.073 quicker in seventh.
Speaking to formula1.com after qualifying Button said: ďWe struggled to get the tyres to work today Ė when you canít get temperature into the tyre; you donít know its limit because itís too cold, and you canít hit the brakes either because youíll lock up. Itís an issue weíve had for a few races and an area where we need to improve. In dry running, however, the pace is very good: we just struggle in wet conditions to get the tyres working.
He continued: 'the positives that we can take away are that our car looks quick in the dry and that this weekendís upgrade package is a good step forward. Everyone should be proud of their efforts to not only get it working, but to also have delivered it ahead of schedule this weekend. Today was tough, but I hope we have a good race tomorrow.Ē
Much to the delight of Button it was a dry race and the McLaren enjoyed a good start pulling away from the grid.
He diced with danger, running wheel-to-wheel with Pastor Maldonado before getting past the Williams and then he began his assault on the field with driving that is not often associated with Button.
Using the DRS zone in the way it was intended he first set up his move on the Force India of Nico Hulkenberg, he dummied the move to go around the outside, commiting the German to the middle of the track before diving down the inside under-braking.
Then on the same part of the track he caught and passed another German in the form of Michael Schumacher, although the Mercedes didn't offer as much resistance, choosing to either not fight the position or simply being caught out by the speed Button was enjoying during this part of the Grand Prix.
After the first phase of pit-stops Button was in third place behind Vettel and Alonso, but with Hamilton struggling with a damaged floor following his early race puncture, Button found himself behind Hamilton during the mid-way point of his second set of tyres.
Hamilton was given the order to not hold up Button and with fresh rubber, Hamilton was able to pull away from Button and even catch and pass Vettel, much to the annoyance of Vettel.
Red Bull claim that this was the part of the race that helped Button close the gap, but in reality, Hamilton didn't play in role in it, catching and passing Vettel in the DRS zone and then immediately pulling away from the German.
Button was the first to pit for a second time and whilst the McLaren team have come under severe criticism due to mistakes in other races, they ran like clock work for Button's stop, changing all four tyres in just 2.4 seconds.
This pit stop together with a quick out-lap got him passed Vettel when Red Bull and Ferrari pitted at the same time.
The drama wasn't over at this point though, Button's tyres started to lose grip towards the end of the race and Vettel was able to get back into the battle for second. But rather than being patient and picking his moment, Vettel decided to make his move off the track to attempt to claim second place in his home grand prix.
Button refused to discuss the manoeuvre after the race which resulted in a 20 second penalty for Vettel, which moved Button back into the rightful position of second.
ďI had a really good race and really enjoyed myself out there. I made a good start, pulled off some good moves on both Nico Hukenberg and Michael Schumacher and had strong pace all afternoon. Sebastian Vettelís pass was a pretty straightforward matter: the rules state that you canít go off the track to gain an advantage. The thing is, there would have been more opportunities for him before the end of the race as my rear tyres were damaged. Thatís because I had to push hard to try and catch Fernando Alonso, which meant I had nothing left for the end of the race. We pretty much ran out of rubber two laps before the chequer.
Button's strong points finish moves him up to seventh in the F1 standings, but he remains 24 points behind team-mate Lewis Hamilton.
Date:Tuesday July 24 2012
2016 Belgian Grand Prix - Race (Sunday August 28 2016)
Blog: Spa Qualifying (Saturday August 27 2016)
2016 Belgian Grand Prix - Qualifying (Saturday August 27 2016)
2016 Belgian Grand Prix - FP3 (Saturday August 27 2016)
2016 Belgian Grand Prix - FP2 (Friday August 26 2016)
2016 Belgian Grand Prix - FP1 (Friday August 26 2016)
Will Renault take up Magnussen option? (Thursday August 25 2016)
Hamilton set for huge grid penalty (Thursday August 25 2016)
Blog: Spa Preview (Wednesday August 24 2016)
Drivers make tyre selections for Belgium (Tuesday August 23 2016)
F1 Prediction Competition open for round 13 (Monday August 22 2016)
Who will win at Spa? (Monday August 22 2016)
Formula One is a team sport (Friday August 19 2016)
Formula One needs to tweak blue flag rules (Thursday August 18 2016)
Haas close to confirming new line-up (Wednesday August 17 2016)
All eyes on Ocon (Tuesday August 16 2016)
We should test Halo properly says Massa (Monday August 15 2016)
Toro Rosso expect team-mate rivalry (Friday August 12 2016)
New face on the grid after the summer break (Thursday August 11 2016)
Whisper it, the old Hockenheim wasnít very good (Wednesday August 10 2016)
Just let them drive! Says Wolff (Tuesday August 9 2016)
Rosberg will bounce back (Monday August 8 2016)
F1 penalties too inconsistent (Monday August 8 2016)
Ferrari form is painful (Friday August 5 2016)
Alonso unhappy (Friday August 5 2016)
Hamilton pleased with buffer in championship race (Thursday August 4 2016)
Kvyat a broken man (Thursday August 4 2016)
Pirelli test new wide tyres (Wednesday August 3 2016)
Verstappen earning trust at Red Bull (Wednesday August 3 2016)
Arrests made in Bernie's mother-in-law kidnapping (Tuesday August 2 2016)
Blog: German GP Report (Tuesday August 2 2016)
Was it right to penalise Rosberg? Rosberg says no (Monday August 1 2016)
New leader after Germany drama (Monday August 1 2016)
2016 German Grand Prix - Race (Sunday July 31 2016)
Blog: Hockenheim Qualifying (Saturday July 30 2016)
2016 German Grand Prix - Qualifying (Saturday July 30 2016)
2016 German Grand Prix - FP3 (Saturday July 30 2016)
2016 German Grand Prix - FP2 (Friday July 29 2016)
2016 German Grand Prix - FP1 (Friday July 29 2016)
Cockpit protection introduction delayed (Friday July 29 2016)
Championship will be lost by DNFs (Thursday July 28 2016)
Allison leaves Ferrari by mutual consent (Thursday July 28 2016)
F1 Prediction Competition open for round 12 (Wednesday July 27 2016)
Drivers make tyre selections for Germany (Wednesday July 27 2016)
Blog: Hockenheim Preview (Tuesday July 26 2016)
F1 must look at safety aspect of yellow flags (Tuesday July 26 2016)
Bernie's mother-in-law kidnapped claim reports (Tuesday July 26 2016)
Who will win in Germany? (Monday July 25 2016)
Hamilton snatches championship lead (Monday July 25 2016)
Another four years for Vettel at Ferrari? (Monday July 25 2016)
Blog: Hungarian GP Report (Sunday July 24 2016)
2016 Hungarian Grand Prix - Race (Sunday July 24 2016)
Blog: Hungaroring Qualifying (Saturday July 23 2016)
2016 Hungarian Grand Prix - Qualifying (Saturday July 23 2016)
2016 Hungarian Grand Prix - FP3 (Saturday July 23 2016)
2016 Hungarian Grand Prix - FP2 (Friday July 22 2016)
2016 Hungarian Grand Prix - FP1 (Friday July 22 2016)
Rosberg signs new deal with Mercedes (Friday July 22 2016)
FIA clarify radio communications (Friday July 22 2016)
Alonso reveals he may quit Formula One (Thursday July 21 2016)
Peter Sauber retires as team is sold (Thursday July 21 2016)
You should never, ever, give up says Hamilton (Wednesday July 20 2016)
Drivers make tyre selections for Hungary (Wednesday July 20 2016)
Hamilton's run will end says Rosberg (Tuesday July 19 2016)
Blog: Hungaroring Preview (Tuesday July 19 2016)
F1 Predicton Competition open for round 11 (Monday July 18 2016)
Who will win in Hungary? (Monday July 18 2016)
Sainz confirms commitment to Red Bull (Friday July 15 2016)
F1 set to scrap prize money structure? (Thursday July 14 2016)
Hamilton Mania (Wednesday July 13 2016)
Ferrari keeping an eye on Hamilton (Tuesday July 12 2016)
Blog: British GP Report (Monday July 11 2016)
Hamilton Mania (Monday July 11 2016)
2016 British GP - Race (Sunday July 10 2016)
Blog: Silverstone Qualifying (Saturday July 9 2016)
2016 British Grand Prix - Qualifying (Saturday July 9 2016)
2016 British Grand Prix - FP3 (Saturday July 9 2016)
2016 British Grand Prix - FP2 (Friday July 8 2016)
2016 British Grand Prix - FP1 (Friday July 8 2016)
Blog: Silverstone Preview (Thursday July 7 2016)
No reason for Pirelli tyre failure - Vettel (Wednesday July 6 2016)
Drivers make their selections for Silverstone (Wednesday July 6 2016)
Incident was brainless - But let them race! (Tuesday July 5 2016)
A rare good day for McLaren & Button (Tuesday July 5 2016)
Reckless Rosberg (Monday July 4 2016)
F1 Prediction Competition open for round 10 (Monday July 4 2016)
Who will win in Britain? (Monday July 4 2016)
Blog: Austrian GP Report (Sunday July 3 2016)
2016 Austrian GP - Race (Sunday July 3 2016)
Blog: Red Bull Ring Qualifying (Saturday July 2 2016)
2016 Austrian GP - Qualifying (Saturday July 2 2016)
2016 Austrian GP - FP3 (Saturday July 2 2016)
2016 Austrian GP - FP2 (Friday July 1 2016)
2016 Austrian GP - FP1 (Friday July 1 2016)
Blog: Red Bull Ring Preview (Thursday June 30 2016)
Pirelli announce driver selections for Austria (Tuesday June 28 2016)
F1 Prediction Comp - Open for round 9 (Monday June 27 2016)
Who will win in Austria? (Monday June 27 2016)
Sainz expected to stay with Red Bull stable (Friday June 24 2016)
F1 musical chairs begins (Thursday June 23 2016)
|7.||Push The Button||483|