Jenson Button celebrated his 50th GP with McLaren with a win at Spa, beating Sebastian Vettel, Kimi Raikkonen and Nico Hulkenberg...
Jenson Button: "I'm sorry to all the fans if it wasn't very exciting at the front! However, winning a grand prix is never easy: you've always got to look after the tyres and keep an eye on the gap behind. Today's race was particularly tricky to read, in fact, because lots of cars were on different strategies so you never knew exactly where you stood. Turn One looked pretty crazy - in my mirrors, I could see cars all over the place. For me, it was all pretty straightforward though. Having said that, without having been able to gather long-run testing data from Friday, it initially looked like it was going to be a hard race to call. In fact, as things panned out, it was the opposite. It was unusual to be able to run a one-stop strategy. We got to lap 12 and the team asked me how the car was feeling; I told them that the balance was getting better and better, so we were able to get to lap 20 before pitting. We need to score big points in both world championships - and today was exactly what we required. I'm a massive team-player, and I fight for the team; I want us to win both world championships and, until I can't mathematically fight for the drivers' world championship, I won't give up on it. I think I showed that today."
Lewis Hamilton: "First, I want to offer my congratulations to Jenson. I watched the whole race on TV and he did an absolutely brilliant job. It's great for him and fantastic for the team. It also gives me huge confidence, going into the next race, knowing that our car has got fantastic pace. If we can get it right on our side of the garage, then we ought to be capable of scoring a strong result in Monza. In fact, I'm already channelling all my energy into doing just that. It's been a difficult day for me - my race was so short that I didn't even break a sweat out there. I don't really want to talk about the start - I think everyone saw what happened - it's just a shame. This wasn't a great day for my world championship hopes either, but I certainly won't be giving up."
Sebastian Vettel: "I'm happy with that today. Qualifying wasn't as we planned it to be yesterday, but today the car seemed to be back to as we know it. The start was poor; I think I was the only one not to gain positions through the first corners, so we had to fight our way back, which wasn't easy, but I enjoyed it a lot. The strategy worked perfectly for us and we had the pace, which was the best thing about today. The car worked well and we didn't struggle. Congratulations to Jenson and Mclaren on the win. We've got a lot of back to backs this season and I'm looking forward to Monza later this week. We had a great race there last year - it's always a great atmosphere and we'll be pushing hard."
Mark Webber: "The start was pretty wild, which can happen at La Source. We settled into a race, but it became obvious quite early on that it was difficult for us to overtake. Obviously Seb and I had a little battle, which was fine - but after that, it just wasn't possible to fight other people on the straight line, so that made it tough. We tried to under-cut some people and roll the dice... I had Petrov on the out lap, which is fair play to him as he's just doing his thing, but we lost time there. We had a bit of luck at the start, but after that we didn't get the most out of the situation - but it was good to finish six places higher than I started and get points."
Kimi Raikkonen: "I made a pretty okay start, similar to Jenson [Button]'s and I overtook the Sauber. I saw a lot of action in the mirrors but luckily it missed me. Unfortunately, we didn't have the pace today. My car wasn't great all weekend and we couldn't find a competitive setup. On new tyres it was okay, but we had to use a lot of downforce to prevent sliding. That meant we were very slow on the straight. You could see this in my battle with Michael [Schumacher]. Each time I passed him he just went straight back past down the Kemmel straight. My only chance was to go for a gap at Eau Rouge. Luckily it paid off and I managed to stay ahead of him that time. We didn't have the pace today and it wasn't an easy race, so P3 was not too bad."
Romain Grosjean: "When your life is all about racing, not being allowed to attend an event is probably one of the worst experiences you can go through. That said, I do respect the verdict of the Stewards. I got a good start - despite being disturbed by Pastor's early launch, which I think was the case for everybody at the front - and was heading into the first corner when the rear of my car made contact with the front of Lewis [Hamilton]'s. I honestly thought I was ahead of him and there was enough room for both cars ; I didn't deliberately try to squeeze him or anything like that. This first corner situation obviously isn't what anyone would want to happen and thankfully no-one was hurt in the incident. I wish to apologise to the drivers who were involved and to their fans. I can only say that today is part of a process that will make me a better driver."
Nico Hulkenberg: "I'm delighted with the result today - my best finish in Formula One. It's a result that the whole team has worked hard for and I want to say a huge 'thank you' to all the guys because everything went perfectly today. The start was eventful, but fortunately I avoided all the debris and was able to take advantage of the situation. I was up a high as second and for a while I was even thinking we could finish on the podium. But the race was tough; I had some great fights with Kimi and Michael, and I was always on the limit. For us it was clear that we had to stop twice and we made the strategy work. So I've got a big smile on my face today because it's just the result we needed for our fight in the championship."
Paul di Resta: "A tough race for me largely due to the KERS failure on the car just before the race, which really hurt my performance and speed on the straights. I couldn't really attack or defend, which is a shame because I was up to fourth place at the start, but we couldn't capitalise on it. I kept battling and tried my best to come away with the final point, but so much more was possible today."
Belgian GP: Button Survives Carnage To Win
Any reproduction, publication or redistribution of this material without the written agreement of 365 Media Group is strictly forbidden.