Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

2009 championship contender - Jenson Button - The Brit searches for a first title victory with the Brawn team

Published by Christine

We have reached our third and final driver in with a chance at securing the 2009 title, and it's fair to say the odds are in Button's favour. Having previously discussed Barrichello and Vettel with their points deficit, Button has the maths on his side.

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After being rather anonymous at the back of the grid in a Honda car for the past few years, Button certainly made his point this season. He and his Brawn car burst onto the grid in 2009, winning six out of the first seven races, and placing third in the one that got away. That isn't a start to be sniffed at.

With a massive points haul under his belt, things started to go a little bit wrong for JB. His car suddenly seemed to stop working underneath him, and no matter which way they went with the setup, it was as though he was back in the Honda again. Okay, granted, he was still finishing in the points, just, but every race would hear a strangled cry from Jenson over the radio to his engineers.

Immediately, and almost without reason, it became the media mantra to suggest that Button can't handle the pressure. I'm not in the paddock, of course, but from what we have seen, it's not the pressure that's getting to him, it's the frustrating of wondering where their awesome car went. Whether it is other teams catching them up, or Brawn not developing as much as they should, the second half of the season has been a struggle.

Still, if anyone can handle struggles, Jenson can. You don't stick with Honda for two years, to be repaid by the team leaving, and come back with a smile on your face, unless you know how to deal with things when they go wrong. In his super reliable Brawn, Button has scored at least one point in every race, bar one retirement. Let's not talk about it too much, but needless to say, it was not really his fault.

With a 14 point lead over nearest rival Barrichello and a further two points over Vettel, Button has had the potential to sew up the championship for the last few races. Each time, it hasn't worked out, but each time, he is getting closer to his goal. It would take something quite drastic to happen for Button to lose his first Driver's Championship now, and whilst we always say anything can happen, I have a feeling that Jenson can make it happen.

He and Rubens have a very close working relationship, and we've seen plenty of hugs in the Brawn garage as the pair have each made a success of their year. If either of them win it, I think the other will be gracious about it, but both of them know, this could be their best (and maybe only) opportunity for a title.