Rivals' pain becomes Vettel's gain
Jenson Button claimed his second win this year and 14th of his career on Sunday when he drove to a comprehensive victory in an incident and accident-packed Belgian Grand Prix.india Updated: Sep 03, 2012 02:20 IST
Jenson Button claimed his second win this year and 14th of his career on Sunday when he drove to a comprehensive victory in an incident and accident-packed Belgian Grand Prix.
Starting from the eighth pole position of his career and his first for the McLaren team, the 32-year-old Briton produced a consummate display of dominant driving from start to finish.
It was his first victory on the spectacular and historic Spa-Francorchamps circuit.
His victory was his first since the season-opening race in Australia and came in his 50th outing for McLaren and 220th overall as Formula One resumed after a month off for the traditional European summer break.
Button, the 2009 champion, came home 13.624 seconds ahead of second-placed defending champion German Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull with Finn Kimi Raikkonen of Lotus completing a podium of champions by coming home third.
Championship leader Spaniard Fernando Alonso of Ferrari crashed out of the race at the first corner where he was he was an innocent victim of a multiple collision triggered by aggressive driving by Frenchman Romain Grosjean in the second Lotus.
Grosjean swerved into Briton Lewis Hamilton of McLaren causing a pile-up that eliminated both drivers, along with Alonso and Mexican Sergio Perez of Sauber.
This gifted Red Bull men Vettel and Australian Mark Webber a perfect opportunity to close ground in the title race.
Webber finished sixth behind a dazzling display by German Nico Hulkenberg, who was fourth for Force India, and Brazilian Felipe Massa, of Ferrari.
Michael Schumacher, in his 300th Grand Prix and back at his favourite circuit where he made his debut in 1991, finished seventh for Mercedes ahead of Jean-Eric Vergne and his Toro Rosso team-mate Daniel Ricciardo with Briton Paul Di Resta taking 10th place in the second Force India.
Vettel's opportunism saw him rise to second behind Alonso in the drivers' standings with 140 points to the Spaniard's 164.
First Published: Sep 03, 2012 01:08 IST