• Turkish GP

Button leads Red Bulls to sixth victory

ESPNF1 Staff
June 7, 2009
Button reigns supreme in Turkey © Sutton Images

Jenson Button secured his sixth win from seven races in Turkey to extend his championship lead to 26 points over team-mate Rubens Barrichello, who failed to finish after a disastrous race. Fellow title rival Sebastian Vettel finished in third position, after gifting Button the lead in the opening lap and losing second to his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber in the pit stops.

The start saw Vettel make a good getaway from pole with Button slotting in behind. Starting third, Barrichello almost stalled his Brawn and plummeted down the field, allowing a fast starting Jarno Trulli up to third position with Webber right behind.

Vettel's one error came on that first lap as he ran wide through turn nine and, with his momentum lost, Button breezed by to take the lead, one he would never relinquish exiting.

Vettel was running a slightly lighter fuel load than both Button and Webber but Red Bull opted against switching him from three stops to two, even after he lost the lead to Button. This error would prove critical in the latter stages of the race as Vettel dropped behind Webber and the race for second was effectively over.

Webber drove a strong race and fully deserved his runner-up position, which closes his gap to Vettel to just 1.5 points in the battle for third in the championship. After being jumped by Trulli off the line, the Australian soon forced his way ahead and then ran 20 seconds or so behind Button until the final laps. Conserving his Brawn Mercedes, the championship leader allowed the gap to tumble to seven seconds at the chequered flag.

Trulli had a solid race for Toyota. After losing position to Webber early in the race, the Italian found himself behind Nico Rosberg following the first round of stops. Trulli pressed on and regained the position in the second and final stop.

Rosberg finished fifth in his Williams, his best result of the season, but may have lost time behind team-mate Kazuki Nakajima ahead of his second stop and this could have cost the German racer fourth position. Nakajima himself ran well and was challenging for points until problems fitting the front-left wheel in the final stop dropped him down the order and out of contention.

Felipe Massa had a quiet race to sixth in the leading Ferrari as he trailed Rosberg by eight seconds across the line, while Robert Kubica secured his first points of the season with a seventh-place finish in his BMW Sauber. The team is still a long way from being a front-runner, but at least made gains following the disastrous Monte Carlo showing. Kubica held off a charging drive from Timo Glock in the second Toyota who made the best of a long first stint to beat some very big names.