Posted on October 26, 2009


There has been a lot of talk this week about Jenson Button’s contract talks with the Brawn team. Proving what an unsentimental business this is, the champagne soaked clothes are barely back from the dry cleaners and both sides are publicly playing hardball. It’s a question of who needs who the most. The team have come through a lot together. It was really noticeable on the day the titles were clinched in Brazil that Ross Brawn’s first thoughts were for the employees he had been forced to let go when the team downsized from 700 to 450 in April. Equally, More…

Posted on September 13, 2009


Rubens Barrichello took his second victory in three races at the Italian Grand Prix, heading home team mate Jenson Button. It was a beautifully judged performance all weekend from the 37 year old, to put his team mate in the shade. Whereas Button hit the ground running at the start of the season, since Turkey it has been all Barrichello. Today was Barrichello’s third win at Monza and the first time that he has headed Button in a Brawn 1-2 finish. It moved him to 14 points behind Button in the championship and with the Red Bull pair of Mark More…

Posted on September 7, 2009


I must admit when I saw the story in the Telegraph this morning suggesting that Mercedes might be buying into the Brawn team I wasn’t sure. On the face of it, why would they need to do that, when they already have a 40% stake in McLaren? It seems all the more intriguing that they should be doing this at a time when other manufacturers like Honda and now BMW are pulling out and Toyota are dramatically reducing their spend on the sport. Who knows what Renault’s next move will be after the judgement is made on the Singapore race-fixing More…

Posted on August 25, 2009


Over the weekend I heard that the Brawn team had signed a new sponsor for 2010 and had some off the record chats about it with some of the people there. Today I see that the story is in the open as Autosport has got Nick Fry to talk on the record about it, “We’ve signed some nice contracts, and those will come out into the open when we launch the car next year, but we will see what happens. There is zero worry on our side,” he said. Brawn has had a great year by anyone’s standards and look More…

Posted on August 11, 2009


I was interested to see some quotes from Jenson Button’s race engineer Andrew Shovlin in a story on the BBC website about what the team has done to send it’s 2009 challenger down the wrong path on development. Since Jenson Button’s last win, in Turkey three races ago, he has not featured in the top three in qualifying or the race and the only podium has been Rubens Barrichello’s at Silverstone. Button toiled there, largely it was assumed, because he could not get the tyres up to temperature, but in the final laps he suddenly got on to the pace, More…

Posted on July 27, 2009


Jenson Button has seen his championship lead diminish badly in the last three races. He has scored six points since Turkey, while Mark Webber has scored 24 and Sebastian Vettel 18. At four points per race, as he lost here in Budapest, he will lose the title lead by Japan. Brawn had a third bad result in a row on a track where everyone thought they should have re-established themselves. Hungary was everyone’s idea of a strong Brawn track and if you throw in the heat, and the updated technical package, it is deeply worrying for them that they could More…

Posted on July 23, 2009


Jenson Button was his usual honest self at his press briefing today in Budapest, facing up to the challenge and giving an insight into the level of research he has done into the track and how it suits the opposition. On Red Bull he said something very interesting, which is that he hopes the updates Brawn has brought here this weekend will “be enough to challenge the Red Bulls,” suggesting that he clearly feels that Brawn has fallen behind them lately. This may seem obvious given the mauling he’s taken in the last two races, but bear in mind that More…

Posted on July 12, 2009


Mark Webber took the first win of his long career today in commanding style, surviving a drive through penalty for ramming Rubens Barrichello at the start to take the chequered flag and give Red Bull its third win of the season. Webber’s Red Bull team mate Sebastian Vettel was second and Ferrari’s Felipe Massa third. We thought that Silverstone may have been a turning point of the season, with the almost brand new Red Bull car which dominated the weekend. Today we got confirmation that it was – and it is not just because of the high speed corners that More…

Posted on June 18, 2009


Hi James, Got this message today from one of my readers, Charlie. Put a smile on my face and hope it will do for you too. “James, Do you remember me taking your advice and putting £20 on Brawn to win the Championship? at 15-1? well I got this email from Paddypower this morning: …..With the British Grand Prix around the corner and Jenson Button and the Brawn team still thrashing allcomers, we’ve decided to accept reality and settle all bets on Jenson Button to win the World Drivers Championship and Brawn to win the World Constructors Championship as winners! More…

Posted on June 15, 2009


Ross Brawn took part in a teleconference today ahead of the weekend’s British Grand Prix. It’s been a stunning first half of the season for Brawn, with six wins from seven races and 16 trophies in the cabinet. Jenson Button is on target to win the world championship. If things carry on as they have so far, then Jenson could be in a position to clinch the title in Japan. Many people, including Ross, thought that Red Bull in particular would be hard to contain in Turkey and he was delighted with the way his team attacked the main weakness More…

Posted on May 11, 2009


Vijay Mallya is bobbing in the harbour on his motor yacht, Flavio Briatore will have zoomed off in his private jet, like most of the drivers but the winner of today’s Grand Prix, was on the Easyjet flight to Luton with his team, Red Bull, Force India, me and a load of sunburned, happy fans. Most of them couldn’t believe their eyes that Ross was on the same flight and he had to pose for photos with many of them. His only token bit of elitism – he paid €12 for Speedy Boarding! Ross has always been a team player More…

Posted on March 9, 2009


I’ve been at the Barcelona test today, where Jenson Button put the new Brawn-Mercedes through it’s first full day of testing alongside the opposition. And what a day it was. Jenson was fastest this morning and then this afternoon he wound up fourth with a best lap of 1min 21.140. But we shouldn’t get too carried away with the headline lap times, the point is that the car ran very reliably, covering 250 miles in total, which is a fantastic effort for a first full day’s running, as rival teams acknowledged. It ran with hardly any problems and Jenson had More…



COUNTDOWN TO NEXT RACE
Strategy Report
Innovation and Technology brought to you by TATA Communications
Senna DVD
Download the Chequered Flag Podcast here
MTS
Darren Heath
Sport Right Now