PRIME MINISTER GORDON BROWN LEADS TRIBUTES TO JENSON BUTTON AT THE 2009 BRDC ANNUAL AWARDS The British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) celebrated motor racing achievements of 2009 in some style today (Monday 7 December), when it hosted the BRDC ...
PRIME MINISTER GORDON BROWN LEADS TRIBUTES TO JENSON BUTTON AT THE 2009 BRDC ANNUAL AWARDS
The British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) celebrated motor racing achievements of 2009 in some style today (Monday 7 December), when it hosted the BRDC Annual Awards Luncheon at a star-studded event at The InterContinental Hotel in Park Lane, London. The ceremony was attended by motor racing's finest and the Club was honoured to welcome The Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, as a distinguished guest to present Jenson Button with one of his awards - the Richard Seaman Trophy.
It was another successful afternoon for the recently crowned Formula 1 World Champion. Button joined Sir Stirling Moss and fellow British F1 World Champions Sir Jackie Stewart OBE and Damon Hill OBE for a brief photo call, before receiving a standing ovation as he collected no fewer than four awards - including the prestigious BRDC Gold Star, presented to him by ten-time BRDC Gold Star winner, Sir Stirling Moss OBE.
Button's arrival at the Awards was eagerly anticipated and, once on stage, he spoke about his remarkable Championship-winning season with Brawn GP, thanking his former team for their hard work, support and commitment throughout a sensational year.
On presenting Button with his award The Prime Minister said, "We have a world champion in whom we have so much pride, who fought back against all the odds, who achieved something when some people thought at the beginning of the season it was impossible: Jenson, the whole country is proud of you. You are a brilliant ambassador for British sport."
Speaking on the day Silverstone and the BRDC announced a new 17-year deal to host the Formula 1 British Grand Prix, the Prime Minster added, "It is a particular privilege for me to be here on the day when we are announcing that Silverstone, the first racing track to have a world championship race in 1950, will now have for another seventeen years the British Grand Prix. I believe that all those who have contributed to that success and to that announcement today deserve our praise. It puts Britain right at the centre of world racing for seventeen years to come. Thank you all for what you've achieved."
Button, however, wasn't the only driver being celebrated at the prestigious Awards ceremony. Dario Franchitti was presented with his first Gold Star after winning his second IndyCar Series Driver's Championship in 2009. While British Touring Car Championship driver Jason Plato was also in attendance to receive the BRDC's highest national racing accolade, the BRDC Silver Star.
The achievements of Lewis Hamilton MBE and Sebastian Vettel were recognised, with the two drivers being awarded the John Cobb Trophy and Johnny Wakefield Trophy respectively. Neither was able to collect their awards in person, however, Lewis had been able to pre-record an acceptance speech which was played to the attending guests. Fellow F1 driver Mark Webber was in attendance and was suitably honoured with both the Innes Ireland and Bruce McLaren Trophies. The successes of Ross Brawn and Adrian Newey were also recognised, with the duo being presented with the Colin Chapman Trophy (awarded to an individual who has shown great team spirit) and the Sir Jackie Stewart Award (presented to a motor sport engineer who has shown brilliance during the course of the season).
A new award, the Henry Surtees Award, was also introduced this year, recognising the most outstanding performance by a BRDC Rising Star. The inaugural winner of this award was Daniel Ricciardo, following his title-winning season in the British F3 Championship.
2009 BRDC ANNUAL AWARD WINNERS
BRDC GOLD STAR JENSON BUTTON
First presented in 1929. The BRDC Gold Star is awarded annually.
BRDC GOLD STAR
First presented in 1929. The BRDC Gold Star is awarded annually.
BRDC SILVER STAR
The national equivalent of the BRDC Gold Star.
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THE BRUCE McLAREN TROPHY
Awarded to the Commonwealth Driver who has established the most meritorious performances in international motor racing.
Sponsored by Transport Research Labs.
THE CHRIS BRISTOW TROPHY
Awarded to the winner of the BRDC McLaren Autosport Young Driver of the Year Award.
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THE COLIN CHAPMAN TROPHY
A BRDC Special Award presented to an individual who has shown great team spirit, be it a driver, team owner, engineer or similar.
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THE EARL HOWE TROPHY
Awarded to the highest placed British Driver in the Indy 500 race, or to the British driver who has established the most meritorious performance of the year in North America.
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THE ERA CLUB TROPHY
Awarded to the British Driver who, driving a British car, established the most meritorious performance of the year outside the UK.
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THE FAIRFIELD TROPHY
Awarded for an outstanding performance by a BRDC Member.
THE GRAHAM HILL TROPHY
Awarded to the British Driver for the most meritorious performance in single-seater racing.
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THE INNES IRELAND TROPHY
Awarded to the driver who best displayed the qualities of courage and sportsmanship epitomized by the late Innes Ireland.
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THE JOHN COBB TROPHY
LEWIS HAMILTON MBE
Awarded to a British Driver, driving a British car, who has achieved success or successes of outstanding character.
THE JOHN COOPER TROPHY
Awarded annually to a competitor within the British F3 Championship who has shown potential to become a future World Champion.
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THE JOHNNY WAKEFIELD TROPHY
Awarded to the driver setting the fastest race lap of the season on the Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit.
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THE NIGEL MOORES TROPHY
TEAM RAC (West Surrey Racing)
Awarded to the private entrant who has established the most meritorious performance(s) in international motor racing.
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THE RICHARD SEAMAN TROPHY
Awarded to the winner of the Gold Star points scoring system.
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THE SILVERSTONE-LE MANS CHALLENGE
JAN CHAROUZ, TOMAS ENGE and STEFAN MUCKE
Awarded to the driver/s who achieved the highest combined finishing record in combined results of the Silverstone LMS race and the Le Mans 24-Hour Race.
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THE SIR JACKIE STEWART AWARD
Awarded to a motor sport engineer who has shown brilliance during the course of the season.
THE SPENCER-CHARRINGTON TROPHY
Awarded to the highest-placed British Driver in the British F3 Championship.
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THE WOOLF BARNATO TROPHY
Awarded to the highest-placed finishing British and/or Commonwealth Driver, in a British car, in the Le Mans 24-Hour Race.
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THE ACO AWARD
Presented on behalf of our friends at the ACO, the award is presented to the highest-placed British Driver finishing the Le Mans 24-Hour Race.
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THE HENRY SURTESS AWARD
Awarded annually for the most outstanding performance by a Rising Star.