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Australian GP: Post Race press conference

NEWS STORY
29/03/2009

Jenson, mayhem in front of you perhaps and certainly the mayhem behind you showed how much things could have gone wrong for you today. But from where we sat it looked like a beautiful day at the races.
Jenson Button: I think it always looks easier than it is. The first few laps of the race were great for me and I could settle into a pace, but then when the safety car came out I struggled massively to get heat into the tyres. The car was hitting the ground and just before the safety car pulled in I flat-spotted the tyre pretty severely. I was struggling quite a bit with vibration and with the poor light as well. Being in the front it should be easy, but it was not easy at all. I tell you that. But an amazing day. Some people might say it is a pity it finished under the safety car, but I don't care. I won the race today and that is all I care about. I have got to say a massive thank you to everyone for this. It has been a traumatic few months for all of us, as I have said already, but I can't put it out there how tough it has been, so I have got to say thank you to the whole team. But also to my family for being so strong as it has been difficult.

Rubens, backing up the team performance with a brilliant second place proving the car is not only quick but also incredibly strong.
Rubens Barrichello: It is strong, very strong. I was hit from behind and I hit someone in front. It was a tough race and as Jenson just said, it wasn't an easy race, but for me I never thought I could finish on the podium after the start. I hit anti-stall, so the car went into neutral. I recovered quite quickly but then I lost a lot of pace compared to people and I was hit from behind from a McLaren and that put me sideways and I hit someone really hard. I thought the car was done from that crash but I survived quite well, but on my first stint my nose was falling apart and I lost the braking stability when I hit Kimi as well. He closed the door and I couldn't avoid him. I had a lot of mixed emotions during the race, but it was fantastic. I started second but could only hope for one better but after the start I am delighted to be here with the second place.

Jarno, in some respects starting from the pit lane was the best place to start, given what happened at the first corner.
Jarno Trulli: Well, after yesterday's disappointment this was a great day, especially for my team. I started from the pit and I was lucky enough to get away from the first corner accident. From that time on I was just pushing, pushing, pushing really hard because the car was good. This is a great result and especially I would like to thank my Panasonic Toyota team because they have made a lot of effort and this result is entirely down to them as they have done a god job over the winter time to give me a fantastic car, so after yesterday we bounced back today to show that we are doing things the
right way.

Jenson, you said the light was getting bad and the temperature was dropping and after your second pit stop you are emerging on the softer of the two Bridgestone tyres and the pressure is on with Robert Kubica on the hard tyre.
JB: You know, I really made a mistake in my pit stop and it was frustrating. I was in second gear when I came into the box and the neutral didn't work. It only works in first gear but I was just confused with Massa in front and that lost us a hell of a lot of time, so they just about got the nozzle on after they had done the tyres. That cost me five or six seconds which was a mistake but the good thing was we came out on top anyway with that. There is something to come from me and something to come from the team as well. I made it difficult for us today but we got there.

What were the conditions like right at the end with the shade and the drop in temperatures?
JB: It was really difficult. It is strange for such an open circuit, you could not see the exit of the corners at all. I used a visor that was slightly tinted and that was the correct thing to do. But with the glare from the sun and the change in light from the trees it was so difficult. It was so easy to put a wheel wrong and the problem was the bad light was always on the most difficult corners, so it made it tough and on the prime tyre also we were struggling for heat. I just couldn't get any heat in the tyres in the second stint.

Rubens, you said that you started second. Explain what happened at the start.
RB: Well, revs are on and my car moved and stopped and that's when I hit anti-stall. Anti-stall is a protection from the engine that you have. You jump into neutral if you don't have the right revs. I went on the inside but the McLaren, I don't know who, I hit it really fast on my back and then I hit the other car which was a Red Bull or Toro Rosso. It was a fairly big hit and I thought my race was over, but one thing we can say is that with the crash if people think that our car is only good because of the diffuser, well, that big hit from behind broke the diffuser completely. The car was very strong after that. It didn't have a fantastic pace as the temperature dropped but it had a pace, so still a good car after all.

Jarno, a brilliant race from the pit lane but your race really came alive in those closing stages when on lap 56 Robert Kubica attacked Sebastian Vettel with Vettel on the soft tyre and Robert on the harder tyre and I think you going through the debris after this.
JT: Well, there have been a lot of things going on during this race. Mainly I was trying to push as hard as possible in order to catch up. I made a lot of overtaking during the whole race, at the beginning of the session as well as in the middle and in the end. I didn't know what was going on as my only target was to push as hard as possible to finish as high as possible and somehow I was lucky but once again I have to thank the team as we had a fantastic car, so I could do it.

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