Button: Victory was “Best Ever”

Jenson Button described his victory in the Chinese Grand Prix as his best, as the Britain rocketed to the top of the drivers standing.

Button seized the opportunity presented to him by the changeable weather conditions to move to the front of the pack and take his second victory of the season.

Lewis Hamilton finished second to complete a memorable one-two for the team, after a strong drive through the field. The 2008 champion overcame tyre degradation issues to run his team-mate close to the flag.

Jenson Button – 1st: “This was my best victory in Formula 1. Every race you win becomes your best, but this was an extremely special win in very tough conditions.

“And it’s especially satisfying because it was a really dominant victory for the whole Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team. We scored a one-two today, and the reason we did so was that every single element within the team worked perfectly. From the strategy calls to the pitstops, you need to get everything just right if you’re going to win in conditions like these. And today we did indeed get everything just right.

“It’s not luck that brought us out on top today. We made the right decisions – the guys on the pitwall and back in Woking made the calls brilliantly, and I couldn’t have asked for better support.

“My first few months with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes have been extraordinary I really feel a real part of the team now so today’s result gives us great excitement, encouragement and enthusiasm as we head to Barcelona, and the start of the European season. We hope to be even stronger there.”

Lewis Hamilton – 2nd: “First of all, congratulations to Jenson he did an incredible job and made an excellent tyre choice in what were very tricky conditions this afternoon.

“It was very tough at the start it started to rain right away, and it was a difficult call to decide to pit for intermediate tyres. I made a very late call when I thought I’d heard a comment over the radio, and pulled into the pits when I was halfway round the final corner!

“Unfortunately, it wasn’t the right choice the tyres started graining almost immediately and I needed to stop again, this time for dry tyres. But, after that, I got my head down and made up a lot of positions before the rain got heavier.

“I want to thank the team for making not only some pretty impeccable strategy calls, but also for executing some fantastically slick pitstops. I think the team was operating right at the top of its game today, and I want to thank all the guys for such an incredible effort.

“Towards the end of the race, my tyres really weren’t in good shape. So, while I was able to get past a lot of cars, I wasn’t able to catch Jenson. But we both had an absolutely fantastic afternoon, and I think the whole team deserves this incredible one-two result. I hope the spectators and viewers enjoyed it, too!

“We know we still have to make some improvements to our car, but two wins from four races and the lead of both world championships only make us even more determined. The team is very strong at the moment, and it’s just fantastic to be a part of that.

“We’re confident of making an even bigger step for the Spanish Grand Prix next month, and I want to pass on my thanks and encouragement to all the men and women working so hard in Woking and Stuttgart: your efforts are enormously appreciated, and today’s result could only have been achieved with all your incredible efforts.”

Martin Whitmarsh – Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes: “Today’s race was seriously challenging for drivers and teams alike. The strategy was very tricky to call correctly, but in the end we probably selected two different strategies that suited Jenson and Lewis very well.

“Lewis produced a storming drive characterised by all the passion and flair we’ve grown used to seeing from him I thought some of his overtaking manoeuvres were simply stunning.

“Jenson drove like the world champion that he is to record a truly brilliant win in extremely testing conditions. You won’t see many better drives than that, I can tell you he was very, very impressive today.

“The team did a fantastic job, too. It was a very busy afternoon for all the pitcrews, but I thought ours performed particularly well.

“Credit should also be given to Mercedes-Benz for not only supplying the winning engine but also powering the first three cars home it was the first all-Mercedes-Benz podium in Formula 1 since Aintree 1955.

“Lovers of Formula 1 trivia may also be interested to know that today’s result marks the first all-British one-two since A1-Ring 1999, where Eddie Irvine led David Coulthard home.

“Now, we’re hoping to get our cars and ourselves out of China, home, and then on to Spain just as soon as we can. We’re already looking forward to racing in Barcelona, where we hope to be very competitive yet again.”

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