• McLaren

Button to join 250 club in Bahrain

ESPN Staff
April 2, 2014 « Grosjean expects updates for Bahrain | Ecclestone backs Haas F1 entry »
Kevin Magnussen is the tenth team-mate of Jenson Button's career © Sutton Images

Jenson Button will join an elite group at the Bahrain Grand Prix as he becomes the fifth person to reach the milestone of 250 grand prix starts.

Button will join Rubens Barrichello, Michael Schumacher, Riccardo Patrese and Jarno Trulli in reaching the tally, though he still has some way to surpassing Barrichello's record of 322 starts. He becomes the first Brit to achieve the landmark after David Coulthard retired with 246 to his name in 2008 and Button admits he is still adjusting to being the grid's elder statesman.

"It's crazy, it feels like only yesterday that I was celebrating my 200th, with a win for McLaren in Hungary back in 2011," Button said. "It means I've been around for a long time! I'm very happy with my career, even though there have been highs and lows. One of the things I'm most proud of is the way I've stacked up against my team-mates. I've had 10 of them in 15 seasons, so I've needed to prove myself to the new guy sat beside me virtually every year. It's a very funny sport in that respect because even after everything you've achieved, you've still got to prove yourself time and again."

Button, currently in his 15th season in F1, also believes anything is possible under the lights in Sakhir.

"It's hard to believe that this weekend's race will be the 10th Bahrain Grand Prix - I won this race back in 2009, I've had lots of good performances here, and I really enjoy the challenge the circuit presents. You always feel like you can get a little bit more out of yourself, and the car, which makes it a difficult but rewarding track on which to drive. Things never stand still in Formula 1, and we go to Bahrain facing another new challenge: the circuit's first night race.

"It'll be interesting to see what sort of race we have under the floodlights - racing at night always adds to the atmosphere and sense of occasion, and I think this weekend will be no different. We've scored some useful points in the first two races, which was always our objective for the opening quartet of fly-aways, and I hope we can get some more points in the bag this weekend."

Lewis Hamilton's lap of Bahrain