Frome's Jenson Button passes career milestone with ninth-place finish at Australian Grand Prix
Frome Flyer Jenson Button took little satisfaction from taking his career tally of Formula 1 World Championship points past the 1,000-mark in Melbourne this morning.
Button has claimed a hat-trick of successes at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in the last five years but was never in contention this time around as he finished a lowly ninth – a place better than his qualifying position.
Race winner Kimi Raikkonen was 1min 20secs quicker than Button in his Lotus and the McLaren driver felt he did the best he could with the machinery at his disposal.
“Having won the Australian Grand Prix three times so far in my career – in 2009, 2010 and 2012 – you’d have to say that today’s ninth place isn’t really much to write home about,” admitted Button.
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“Having said that, I think we should be pretty satisfied with what we achieved here in Melbourne today. It was a tricky race, and our car isn’t yet quick enough, so I think the team did a great job to achieve even as much as we did.
“As a result, I scored two World Championship points today, which makes 1,001 in my career I’m reliably informed, and to be honest I don’t think I could have scored any more than that.
“But, although that’s a nice stat, it doesn’t ease the pain caused by the knowledge that our car still needs a lot of work done before it’s properly competitive.”
Button’s team-mate, Mexican Sergio Perez, finished out of the points in 11th spot on a difficult day for eight-times world constructors champions McLaren.
The Somerset-raised driver added: “Looking forward to [the grand prix in] Malaysia next weekend, I think we’ve got a tough few days ahead of us, but hopefully we can now do some number-crunching in an effort to understand our car a bit better and extract a bit more performance out of it there.”