by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 72
A RESPECTED colleague made a valuable insight at the end of the Formula 1 season. "It sort of puts those long lists of the best drivers in the world to shame, doesn't it? The fact that a driver who last year probably didn't even feature in the top 20 is this year being crowned the Formula 1 World Champion." Touché. It is, of course, the anomaly of Formula 1 that the ultimate talent of a driver can sometimes be hidden by the tools at his disposal. The story of Jenson Button may well serve to be the ultimate example of just that. He's always been quick, of that there has been little question, but as he himself has forever claimed, and with increasing frustration, he needed a good car to show his full potential. In 2009 he wasn't just afforded a good car, he was handed the best car. That he then made such hard work of winning the title ultimately called questions about his worth as a champion, and about whether those lists had indeed always been correct in not placing him as high as the Alonsos, Raikkonens and Schumachers of the world. But the world champion, himself, has his own response to the negativity. "You will always have people who are negative, and to start with it is boring talking about me finishing sixth, fourth, fifth, second. . . Jenson did a reasonable job today. . . that doesn't sell newspapers, I understand it is exciting to talk about, 'he is losing it, or if he is a worthy world champion', but I am sitting here now! You can't take that away." You can't take that away. Jenson Button is the world champion. He was given the best tools, did the best job, and that is all that you can ask. But his success in winning the 2009 GPWeek Award for the Most Impressive F1 driver shows that he achieved his lifelong goal in a style which not only got the job done, but caught the attention of his peers in MotoGP and the World Rally Championship. Jenson is a character, a likeable person, one of few human faces in Formula 1. He's somebody who has always had a presence and a personality that appeals both within his sport and outside his sport. And he's a driver who has been through the mill. He's experienced the hardships and come out the other side a better, stronger, more resilient racer. His recognition, then, is perhaps not based solely on his achievement in winning the world championship, but on doing so having overcome so many obstacles. Of course he drove some magnificent races in 2009, and in many ways the fact that he was able to hold off stronger opposition in the second half of the season is what cemented his worth as a champion, as a man who took the most from his advantages but who still did what was necessary when at a disadvantage. He may have had his detractors over his career and even over his championship year, but from his peers in the world of motorsport he has gained their respect and their recognition. To their mind, in 2009 there was no more impressive driver in Formula 1, than Jenson Button. Formula 1: Jenson Button opinion WILL BUXTON GPWeek Editor 2009 -- Jenson Button, 2008 -- Lewis Hamilton "It's an honour to be voted the Most Impressive F1 Driver of the Year in the GPWeek Awards, particularly as the votes came from the guys competing in the WRC and MotoGP this season. "It's always nice to be recognised by your fellow racers as they know the dedication and hard work needed to make it to the top in motorsport. We've had a fantastic season at Brawn GP after our diffcult times over the winter, and I am so proud of our double achievement with the Drivers' and Constructors' titles." AWARDS >> 41