Chinese GP: BAR race notes

B*A*R Honda marked the occasion of today's first-ever Chinese Grand Prix with a podium finish after Jenson Button crossed the finish line in 2nd position. He delivered a thrilling performance throughout the 56-lap race to take the second step on...

B*A*R Honda marked the occasion of today's first-ever Chinese Grand Prix with a podium finish after Jenson Button crossed the finish line in 2nd position. He delivered a thrilling performance throughout the 56-lap race to take the second step on the podium for the fourth time this season, playing his part in keeping B*A*R ahead of Renault in the fight for the runner-up position in the Constructors' Championship.

An equally impressive job by his team-mate Takuma Sato saw him finish 6th today, despite having started from 18th on the grid. Today's 11-point gain not only consolidates B*A*R's second place in the team standings but moves it nine points ahead of Renault.

Jenson Button:

"It's fantastic to finish on the podium in the first-ever Chinese Grand Prix and to achieve my fourth 2nd place finish this season. We came here needing to keep Renault at bay for second in the Championship and a nine-point lead is exactly what we were looking for. It's a great result for the whole team and well done to them for a great job. I didn't get a good start; in fact losing two places off the grid was disastrous."

"Today proved again that our first win is getting closer but starts are something we'll need to look at before we can take the next step up. Our strategy was good but it was so hard to push versus the three-stoppers, so in the end I had to concentrate on keeping Raikkonen behind me. It's been a great race for B*A*R, China and F1 and I'm looking forward to keeping up the fight in Japan in two weeks' time."

Takuma Sato:

"This is a great result for the team! I am delighted with our performance today, with one car on the podium and my car starting from the back of the grid still scoring good points. I fought a hard battle having heavy fuel on board, but I was able to enjoy the race and at the end of the day to be able to finish in sixth place is a great team effort. I am happy that we have moved even further ahead of Renault. This first Chinese Grand Prix has been a great success with really exciting racing and I am now really looking forward to the next race at Suzuka."

David Richards, Team Principal:

"Well that was a pretty dramatic first race for China, and it really could have gone any number of ways right to the end. Jenson drove fantastically, and given that he lost a couple of places at the start and dropped behind the leaders, it made the rest of his race even more impressive. Naturally I am pleased to see yet another second place for Jenson, but I am particularly delighted with sixth for Taku from the back of the grid, perhaps his best drive to date."

"Everyone from Honda, Michelin and all the B*A*R crew have worked very hard for this, and now with just two races to go we have a nine-point lead over Renault and a fighting chance of securing second in the championship. In any event we are assured of third place in both the drivers' and constructors' championships and that is a good reason for celebration!"

Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director:

"This race proved again how well the team can perform at a brand new circuit. This was the result the team needed with excellent drives from both drivers putting us on the podium for the 10th time this year, taking us to over 100 points and securing our position in the Championship. Jenson's two-stop strategy worked as planned and the sharp pit work at his first stop allowed him to get out in front of Webber into free air."

"Although it probably did not affect the outcome of the race, the decision of McLaren to run a short 3rd stint made our race easier; nevertheless we were watching Raikkonen closely over the last few laps. Takuma drove a really strong race making his two-stop plan work well to recover 6th place despite starting in 18th place."

"Our second and sixth place result extends lead over Renault to 9 points going into the last two races. Although second place in the Championship is not guaranteed, it does give the team a lot of confidence going to Suzuka for Honda's home race."

Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:

"I think we put on a good show for the new Chinese audience today. Both drivers clearly gave it everything and we have done very well to get them both solidly into the points. Let's go one better at Suzuka next time!"

Jenson Button
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-05
Position: 2nd
Best lap time: 1:32.935

Takuma Sato
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-06
Position: 6th
Best lap time: 1:33.533

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Takuma Sato , Jenson Button , David Richards , Shuhei Nakamoto
Teams McLaren