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Championship Standings:

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1 Lewis Hamilton 63
2 Valtteri Bottas 58
3 Max Verstappen 33
4 Lando Norris 26
5 Alexander Albon 22
6 Sergio Perez 22
7 Charles Leclerc 18
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9 Carlos Sainz 15
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16 Kevin Magnussen 1
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20 George Russell 0

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1 Mercedes 121
2 Red Bull Honda 55
3 McLaren Renault 41
4 Racing Point Merc 40
5 Ferrari 27
6 Renault 12
7 AlphaTauri Honda 7
8 Alfa Romeo Ferrari 2
9 Haas Ferrari 1
10 Williams Mercedes 0

Button wins again in rain shortened Malaysia GP

by Mark J
Sunday, April 5, 2009


Note: Results revised as Timo Glock was moved to 3rd and Nick Heidfeld to second as they go back to the last completed lap.

A happy Jenson Button celebrates his 2nd win in a row
Jenson Button won his second straight victory for Brawn GP in the Malaysian Grand Prix, a race that had to be red-flagged just after half-distance due to heavy thunderstorms.  The race was never restarted as the 2-hour clock ticked away.

Toyota's Timo Glock used a wise tire strategy to finish second, with Nick Heidfeld picking up third for BMW ahead of Jarno Trulli (Toyota) and Rubens Barrichello (Brawn).

The race was stopped after only 33 of the planned 56 laps. Because less than 75% of the race was completed, only half of the points will be awarded for this race.

Although short, the race was action packed, with Nico Rosberg comfortably leading early, but it was clear Button's Brawn was the fastest car.

The race had started on a dry track but with very dark clouds looming and the radar showing rain on the way.

Rosberg got a great start from fourth on the grid to lead into the first corner, with Button getting hung out around the outside of Turn 1 and was forced to run slightly wide and drop to fourth behind Trulli and the fast-starting Renault of Fernando Alonso.

Button swiftly re-passed Alonso, whose fuel laden car was slow.

Both Rosberg and Trulli were running lighter than the Brawn behind them, and Button got ahead by the time the early pitstops were complete.

Button led with the drivers behind making many pit stops trying to guess between full wets and intermediates.  The race became increasingly hectic as rain threatened and the field dived into the pits. Leader Button pitted on lap 22 for wet tires but the downpour was less than expected and he back in for intermediates on lap 29.

When the rain did arrive, it was so torrential that the wet weather tires which the drivers fitted on lap 31 were not enough to allow the race to safely continue.

The safety car was called on lap 31, with Button narrowly leading from Glock after both had returned to wet tires, with the red flag following before the field even had chance to form up in line.

"They're dreaming if they think we can restart this one," Red Bull driver and GPDA director Mark Webber, flinching as a bolt of forked lightening struck nearby, said during the wait.

After nearly an hour of waiting, the officials finally declared the race over.

As in Australia, Ferrari again scored no points, Kimi Raikkonen abandoning the wait for a re-start with a can of Coke and chocolate ice cream after the team feared a KERS problem amid the deluge.

Button will be taking just 5 points back to his home in Monaco, but his second win of the season gives him a clear 5-point lead in the championship over teammate Rubens Barrichello.

"What a crazy race, it really was," said Button. "My start was pretty bad. I don't think I had heat in my rear tires, 4th, 3rd, then first. Choosing the tires in the rain here is really hard. We tried full wet, wrecked. We then tried intermediates, got reasonable pace and then the wet. Still haven't seen the final flag without the safety car."


Pos No Driver Team Laps Time/Retired Grid Pts
1 22 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 31 55:30.622 1 5
2 6 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 31 +22.7 secs 10 4
3 10 Timo Glock Toyota 31 +23.5 secs 3 3
4 9 Jarno Trulli Toyota 31 +46.1 secs 2 2.5
5 23 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 31 +47.3 secs 8 2
6 14 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 31 +52.3 secs 5 1.5
7 1 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 31 +60.7 secs 12 1
8 16 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 31 +71.5 secs 4 .5
9 3 Felipe Massa Ferrari 31 +76.9 secs 16
10 11 Sebastien Bourdais STR-Ferrari 31 +102.164 secs 15
11 7 Fernando Alonso Renault 31 +109.422 secs 9
12 17 Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 31 +116.130 secs 11
13 8 Nelsinho Piquet Renault 31 +116.713 secs 17
14 4 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 31 +142.841 secs 7
15 15 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 30 Spin 13
16 12 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 30 Spin 20
17 20 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 30 +1 Lap 19
18 21 Giancarlo Fisichella Force India-Mercedes 29 Spin 18
Ret 5 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 1 Engine 6
Ret 2 Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 0 Spin 14

Fastest lap: Button 1:36.641

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