Jenson Button brought home five Championship points for the Honda Racing F1 Team today in the opening round of the 2006 Formula One season, displaying encouraging pace for much of the race. He ended the Bahrain Grand Prix in fourth position...
Jenson Button brought home five Championship points for the Honda Racing F1 Team today in the opening round of the 2006 Formula One season, displaying encouraging pace for much of the race.
He ended the Bahrain Grand Prix in fourth position after competing for a podium position for much of the 57-lap race and enjoying some great battles, including a thrilling dual with his new team-mate Rubens Barrichello.
Unfortunately Rubens' first race for the team was blighted by a gearbox problem and he was unable to push for position. He ended the race in 15th place.
Jenson Button, 4th:
"Had I not had such a bad start then this could have been a great race for us. The pace of the car was absolutely there but the strategy didn't pan out because I lost places off the start and wasn't where we had planned to be at the pitstops."
"We may not have a podium but we have a very competitive car and if you look at the lap times when we weren't in traffic we were genuinely as quick as anyone out there. I think we go to Malaysia feeling extremely positive. If we can address the clutch issue which caused the problem with the start we will be able to fight even harder with the competition."
Ruband Barrichello, 15th:
"It's a disappointing way to finish my first race for the team but in the early stages we saw a taste of our potential. Jenson and I had a great race with each other early on which I'm sure got a few people excited! Soon after though I knew we had a gearbox problem and I had to try to race with one gear missing."
"I was unable to push and had no chance of a points finish, so it wasn't a good way for me to spend the race. We know that the pace is there so we just have to resolve our problems for next weekend when I'm sure we will have a much better race."
Gil de Ferran, Sporting director:
"Jenson drove a brilliant race, pushing hard throughout and showing that we had very similar pace to the leaders. Unfortunately he had a clutch problem at the start which dropped him back and ended up compromising the whole race."
"Rubens was running well early on but he lost the use of a gear which wiped out his chances. We come away from Bahrain disappointed with our final result but at the same time very encouraged by the performance of our car and drivers and looking forward to Malaysia."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering director, Honda Racing Development:
"A disappointing result. Looking at the positives, Jenson's pace matched that of Fernando and Michael for most of the afternoon, and he drove his customary strong race throughout, but the start spoiled his chances of a better finish. It was a shame for Rubens that his debut race for us was affected by a gearbox problem. The V8 engine has been strong the whole weekend, and we remain positive for next week."