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Button Takes Pole as F1 Heads to Europe

May 9, 2009

Jenson Button has recorded his third pole of the season in sunny Spain today, as Formula One heads north for the Spanish Grand Prix, with the European leg of the season hopefully leaving behind the heavy monsoon rains and heated temperatures that were the opening four races. 

It wasn’t just Jenson leading the way in qualifying, in fact the Brit was pretty quiet up until the final lap in quali three when he recorded a lap of 1:20.527 at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona. Button started his flying lap with two seconds left on the clock, and ended up pushing Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel and teammate Rubens Barrichello, who had both been hot on the pace the whole session, back down to P2 and P3 respectively.

Ferrari couldn’t have had more of a mixed bag of results if they tried, with Felipe Massa leading the way in quali one, and securing P4 in quali three, and Kimi Raikkonen being ousted out in the first round thanks to his engineers making a blundering error by assuming he was safe and through to round two – did they not learn from that mistake with Massa in Malaysia? Still, at least it would have given the Finn the possibility for another choc ice if needs be.

For McLaren, Heikki Kovalainen was another of the usual front-runners failing to make it into quali two, a trend that is increasing this season as the mid-field and back-markers bunch up the grid. He will start tomorrow’s race in 18th. Lewis Hamilton failed to make it into quali three, placing himself 14th on the grid.

Button will be hoping to make it four wins out of five when the race starts tomorrow, and considering the Spanish Grand Prix has always seen a front-row sitter take victory, (bar Michael Schumacher’s victory from third), it is looking ever more likely it will happen. At least, if previous victories are anything to go by, we will still only have two winners so far this season. However, when the lights go green tomorrow, watch out for the Brazilian in the red Ferrari on the second row. With a long run down to turn one, Massa will be hoping to make it a victory from fourth, getting his championship campaign off to a start after a somewhat testing start to the season.

With many saying it will be the new start to the 2009 championship, with new aerodynamic upgrades coming from most of the teams, it is set to open the competition up once again.

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