Button unlikely to win title on Sunday (GMM) Although a mathematical possibility, the winner of the 2009 drivers' world championship is now very unlikely to be decided at the Suzuka circuit on Sunday.
For Jenson Button to secure the crown in Japan, he needs to prevent Sebastian Vettel from decreasing his points gap by 6 points, as well as score five more points than his most likely challenger and teammate Rubens Barrichello.
But the Brawn driver qualified just seventh on Saturday, and is pushed even further down the grid for ignoring yellow flags.
Barrichello, 15 points behind the 29-year-old Briton, is also demoted five places for the same offense, but the Brazilian will nonetheless start from higher on the grid than Button.
To achieve his five-point advantage over Barrichello, Button needs to move up the order to at least fourth place, with his 37-year-old rival failing to score at all.
Vettel is also likely to thwart Button's hopes of wrapping up the championship in Japan, because if the German goes on to win from pole, Button has to climb up to third at the checkered flag to knock him out of contention with two races to go.
"I am not expecting to win the championship tomorrow," Button told reporters after learning of his five-place grid demotion on Saturday evening.
It is also an important race for Vettel in relation to Barrichello, because if the Red Bull wins and the Brawn cannot score, the pair will travel to the forthcoming Interlagos event tied on points.