Button wins at action-packed Spa

2012-09-02 15:33

Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium - McLaren's Jenson Button won the Belgian Grand Prix from pole position on Sunday after a first corner carnage ended the hopes of team mate Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari's F1 leader Fernando Alonso.

Button enjoyed an untroubled afternoon in the Belgian sunshine, taking the chequered flag 13.6 seconds clear of Red Bull's double world champion Sebastian Vettel, who won from pole last year.


Finland's Kimi Raikkonen took third place for Lotus.

Alonso, who started the race with a 40-point lead over Red Bull's Australian Mark Webber, had hoped for a record-equalling 24th successive points finish but that was shattered in a cloud of carbon-fibre after a matter of metres.


His lead was cut to 24 points, with Vettel moving up to second overall. Webber dropped to third, 32 points adrift of Alonso.

The Spaniard could at least consider himself fortunate not to have been hit on the head by the flying Lotus of Frenchman Romain Grosjean, whose car took off after colliding with Hamilton.

Said Grosjean: "It was a good start, then a big boom. I have not seen the image, but the main thing is we are all OK. I do not know if I moved over too quickly."

Sauber's Sergio Perez also retired on the spot in a miserable afternoon for the Swiss team after a Saturday qualifying session that had promised so much with their cars on the front two rows.

Kamui Kobayashi, only the second Japanese driver to start from the front row, was also caught up in the first lap mayhem and went to the back of the field and finished 13th.

Button's 14th career win, and first at the classic Spa circuit, came in his 50th race for McLaren.

Said the 2009 champion after his second win of the season: "This circuit is such a special one to most drivers, the way it flows and the history, so to get a light to flag victory is very special."


Force India's German Nico Hulkenberg came fourth, his team's best result of the season, ahead of Ferrari's Felipe Massa and Webber.

Seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher marked his 300th grand prix with seventh place for Mercedes after running as high as second at the circuit where he began his F1 career in 1991 and took his first win in 1992.

Toro Rosso pair Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniel Ricciardo were eighth and ninth in a strong turnaround for the little Italian team ahead of their home race at Monza next weekend.

The stewards were given plenty to ponder with a stack of incidents remaining under investigation and to be resolved after the race.

They included what looked like a clear jumped start from sixth place by Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado's Williams and the unsafe release from the pits of Webber's Red Bull.

Schumacher's cut across Vettel to get into the pitlane was also on their list.

Race results from the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Belgium at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps:

1 Jenson Button McLaren 1min29:08.530sec
2 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull +00:13.624
3 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus +00:25.334
4 Nico Hulkenberg Force India +00:27.843
5 Felipe Massa Ferrari +00:29.845
6 Mark Webber Red Bull +00:31.244
7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes +00:53.374
8 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso +00:58.865
9 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso +01:02.982
10 Paul Di Resta Force India +01:03.783
11 Nico Rosberg Mercedes +01:05.111
12 Bruno Senna Williams +01:11.529
13 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber +01:56.119
14 Vitaly Petrov Caterham +1 lap
15 Timo Glock Marussia +1 lap
16 Charles Pic Marussia +1 lap
17 Heikki Kovalainen Caterham +1 lap
18 Pedro de la Rosa HRT 1 lap

Narain Karthikeyan HRT 15 laps
Pastor Maldonado Williams 40 laps
Romain Grosjean Lotus 44 laps
Lewis Hamilton McLaren 44 laps
Fernando Alonso Ferrari 44 laps
Sergio Perez Sauber 44 laps

Fastest Lap: Bruno Senna Williams 1min52.822sec (lap 43)

Drivers Points
1 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 164
2 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 140
3 Mark Webber Red Bull 132
4 Kimi Raikkonen Renault 131
5 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 117
6 Jenson Button McLaren 101
7 Nico Rosberg Mercedes GP 77
8 Romain Grosjean Renault 76
9 Sergio Perez Sauber 47
10 Michael Schumacher Mercedes GP 35
11 Felipe Massa Ferrari 35
12 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber 33
13 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 31
14 Pastor Maldonado Williams 29
15 Paul Di Resta Force India 28
16 Bruno Senna Williams 24
17 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 8
18 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso 4
19 Vitaly Petrov Team Lotus 0
20 Heikki Kovalainen Team Lotus 0
21 Timo Glock Marussia 0
22 Charles Pic Marussia 0
23 Narain Karthikeyan HRT 0
24 Pedro de la Rosa HRT 0

Constructors Points

1 Red Bull 272
2 McLaren 218
3 Lotus 207
4 Ferrari 199
5 Mercedes 112
6 Sauber 80
7 Force India 59
8 Williams 53
9 Toro Rosso 12
10 Caterham 0
11 Marussia 0
12 HRT 0

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