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Formula 1 2011 Canadian Grand Prix: Button Wins Action-Packed Wet Race

The FIA 2011 Fomula One World Championship saw it’s most incident filled race of the year at round seven, as the 2011 Canadian Grand Prix took place in the rain in Montreal on Sunday 13th June 2011.

A wet race saw many racing incidents coupled with dual DRS activation points: a combination that led to many passes and re-passes, before culminating with a final lap mistake from runaway Championship leader, Sebastian Vettel, which allowed Jenson Button to shoot past for his first win since 2010.

The 2009 World Champion, Button, in his McLaren Mercedes car passed the 2010 Champion’s Red Bull after Vettel made his first – and only – error of the race at the final hurdle.

Button, on the other hand, had perhaps the busiest drive of his career, and had come from stone last at one stage to claim a most exciting victory.

Having had a collission with other former World Champions – including team-mate Lewis Hamilton in lap 7 and Fernando Alonso in the middle part of the race (in accidents where the other party in both cases was forced to retire from the race) – Button pitted six times in all in a race which began under the Safety Car and was to see it come out several more times.

Fans also saw a red flag, as the rain, at times, belted down making any sort of driving completely impossible.

Button, though, showed once more that his silky driving style is up there with the very best when conditions deteriorate. A similar race was enjoyed by those old rain-Gods of Mark Webber and Michael Schumacher who sliced and diced their way through the field at various times for third and fourth respectively, proving that a cool, old, experienced head is important when the heavens open.

But Vettel, sans Safety Cars, looked to have been good enough for all 25 points again and his second place – he has not finished out of the first two positions yet in 2011 – was enough to extend his Championship lead to 60 points, over Canada’s winner, Jenson Button.

Lewis Hamilton, in contrast to his team-mate, had yet another torrid race: during the seven laps he managed to stay out on track, he collided with Mark Webber, and sent the Red Bull man spinning, before attempting to take a near non-existent gap to pass his own team-mate up the outside on the start-finish straight. Button moved over following the racing line, and put his stable-mate into the wall. Speaking after the race, Button said simply that he did not know Hamilton was there, with the spray in his mirrors, and the first thing he knew was when he felt a “bang”.

Hamilton also appeared to make contact with Michael Schumacher in between these other two incidents, in a season which is threatening to become his most erratic since taking the seat at McLaren. At Monaco, Hamilton was something of a liability, and again, in Canada, his driving was, for the most part, overly aggresive to the point of destruction. Hamilton is very much chalk to Button’s cheese, but, at present, while Hamilton tends to out qualify his team-mate, Button is usually best when it counts: on race day.

And so it proved at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve: Button kept finding grip on an slippery surface, and kept fighting his way back time and again when he was knocked out. His raw pace meant he came from fourth place to first in the final few laps, when the intense pressure he put Sebastian Vettel under in the closing stages finally saw the young German’s nerve flinch, momentarily, and Button was all too happy to grab the win as the Red Bull man ran wide at the  first chicane.

2011 looks to be shaping up for a straight shootout between these two most gifted drivers, but, with the side-story of former champs, Alonso and Hamilton, hot on their heels along with the ever-steady Mark Webber. Webber is consistently in the mix at the business end of races, meaning there’s still lots of competition and interest for fans of Formula 1.

For the sport, Vettel’s mistake at the end of 70 laps could not have been more timely: he was in danger of breaking clean away from the pack were he to win. Now, it seems, there just might be a chink in Sebastian Vettel’s armour, which has been created by McLaren’s Jenson Button in the rain of Canada.

Button and the rest of the chasing pack will be hoping to get ahead of Vettel once more at the next Formula 1 race weekend, 24-26 June, when the teams will meet at Valencia, Spain, for the 2011 European Grand Prix: perhaps, following Canada, they will feel more confident that they can.

FIA Formula 1 2011 Canadian Grand Prix – Results

 

P Ctry Name # Team Q Fast Lap Pts
1 GBR Jenson Button 4 McLaren-Mercedes 7 1:16.956 25
2 GER Sebastian Vettel 1 Red Bull-Renault 1 1:17.217 18
3 AUS Mark Webber 2 Red Bull-Renault 4 1:19.572 15
4 GER Michael Schumacher 7 Mercedes GP 8 1:19.138 12
5 RUS Vitaly Petrov 10 Renault 10 1:19.054 10
6 BRA Felipe Massa 6 Ferrari 3 1:19.148 8
7 JAP Kamui Kobayashi 16 Sauber 13 1:20.213 6
8 ESP Jaime Alguersuari 19 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 24 1:20.371 4
9 BRA Rubens Barrichello 11 Williams-Cosworth 16 1:20.316 2
10 SUI Sebastien Buemi 18 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 15 1:19.507 1
11 GER Nico Rosberg 8 Mercedes GP 6 1:20.071
12 ESP Pedro de la Rosa 17 Sauber 17 1:20.369
13 ITA Vitantonio Liuzzi 23 Hispania-Cosworth 20 1:23.419
14 IND Narain Karthikeyan 22 Hispania-Cosworth 22 1:23.116
15 BEL Jerome d’Ambrosio 25 Virgin-Cosworth 23 1:22.495
16 GER Timo Glock 24 Virgin-Cosworth 21 1:24.590
17 ITA Jarno Trulli 21 Lotus-Renault 18 1:22.233
18 GBR Paul Di Resta 15 Force India-Mercedes 11 1:19.395
19 VEN Pastor Maldonado 12 Williams-Cosworth 12 1:24.265
20 GER Nick Heidfeld 9 Renault 9 1:25.135
21 GER Adrian Sutil 14 Force India-Mercedes 14 1:30.171
22 ESP Fernando Alonso 5 Ferrari 2 1:34.223
23 FIN Heikki Kovalainen 20 Lotus-Renault 19 1:38.460
24 GBR Lewis Hamilton 3 McLaren-Mercedes 5 1:37.761
P Ctry Name # Team Q Fast Lap Time Pts
1 GBR Jenson Button 4 McLaren-Mercedes 7 1:16.956 4:04:39.537 25
2 GER Sebastian Vettel 1 Red Bull-Renault 1 1:17.217 0:00:02.709 18
3 AUS Mark Webber 2 Red Bull-Renault 4 1:19.572 0:00:13.828 15
4 GER Michael Schumacher 7 Mercedes GP 8 1:19.138 0:00:14.219 12
5 RUS Vitaly Petrov 10 Renault 10 1:19.054 0:00:20.395 10
6 BRA Felipe Massa 6 Ferrari 3 1:19.148 0:00:33.225 8
7 JAP Kamui Kobayashi 16 Sauber 13 1:20.213 0:00:33.270 6
8 ESP Jaime Alguersuari 19 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 24 1:20.371 0:00:35.964 4
9 BRA Rubens Barrichello 11 Williams-Cosworth 16 1:20.316 0:00:45.117 2
10 SUI Sebastien Buemi 18 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 15 1:19.507 0:00:47.056 1
11 GER Nico Rosberg 8 Mercedes GP 6 1:20.071 0:00:50.454
12 ESP Pedro de la Rosa 17 Sauber 17 1:20.369 0:01:03.607
13 ITA Vitantonio Liuzzi 23 Hispania-Cosworth 20 1:23.419 lapped
14 IND Narain Karthikeyan 22 Hispania-Cosworth 22 1:23.116 lapped
15 BEL Jerome d’Ambrosio 25 Virgin-Cosworth 23 1:22.495 lapped
16 GER Timo Glock 24 Virgin-Cosworth 21 1:24.590 lapped
17 ITA Jarno Trulli 21 Lotus-Renault 18 1:22.233 lapped
18 GBR Paul Di Resta 15 Force India-Mercedes 11 1:19.395 crash, 67 laps
19 VEN Pastor Maldonado 12 Williams-Cosworth 12 1:24.265 retired, 61 laps
20 GER Nick Heidfeld 9 Renault 9 1:25.135 crash, 55 laps
21 GER Adrian Sutil 14 Force India-Mercedes 14 1:30.171 retired, 49 laps
22 ESP Fernando Alonso 5 Ferrari 2 1:34.223 crash, 36 laps
23 FIN Heikki Kovalainen 20 Lotus-Renault 19 1:38.460 retired, 28 laps
24 GBR Lewis Hamilton 3 McLaren-Mercedes 5 1:37.761 retired, 7 laps

FIA 2011 Formula One Drivers’ World Championship – Standings After Round 7, Canada

 

P Name Ctry Team Pts
1 Sebastian Vettel GER Red Bull-Renault 161
2 Jenson Button GBR McLaren-Mercedes 101
3 Mark Webber AUS Red Bull-Renault 94
4 Lewis Hamilton GBR McLaren-Mercedes 85
5 Fernando Alonso ESP Ferrari 69
6 Felipe Massa BRA Ferrari 32
7 Vitaly Petrov RUS Renault 31
8 Nick Heidfeld GER Renault 29
9 Michael Schumacher GBR Mercedes GP 26
10 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes GP 26
11 Kamui Kobayashi JAP Sauber 25
12 Adrian Sutil GER Force India-Mercedes 8
13 Sebastien Buemi SUI Toro Rosso-Ferrari 8
14 Jaime Alguersuari ESP Toro Rosso-Ferrari 4
15 Rubens Barrichello BRA Williams-Cosworth 4
16 Sergio Perez MEX Sauber 2
17 Paul Di Resta GBR Force India-Mercedes 2
18 Pedro de la Rosa ESP Sauber 0
19 Jarno Trulli ITA Lotus-Renault 0
20 Vitantonio Liuzzi ITA Hispania-Cosworth 0
21 Jerome d’Ambrosio BEL Virgin-Cosworth 0
22 Heikki Kovalainen FIN Lotus-Renault 0
23 Narain Karthikeyan IND Hispania-Cosworth 0
24 Pastor Maldonado VEN Williams-Cosworth 0
25 Timo Glock GER Virgin-Cosworth 0

FIA 2011 Formula One Constructors’ World Championship – Standings After Round 7, Canada

 

P Team Pts
1 Red Bull-Renault 255
2 McLaren-Mercedes 186
3 Ferrari 101
4 Renault 60
5 Mercedes GP 52
6 Sauber 27
7 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 12
8 Force India-Mercedes 10
9 Williams-Cosworth 4
10 Lotus-Renault 0
11 Hispania-Cosworth 0
12 Virgin-Cosworth 0

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