Date: 19th March 2012 at 10:21am
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Jenson Button drove a faultless race on Sunday to take his McLaren to the chequered flag first, to start the 2012 Formula One world championship victorious.

The unflappable Brit, completed a no dramas weekend of racing with a perfect 25 points, just as he did when he won the F1 crown in 2009 for Brawn and his first race for McLaren in 2010.

The weekend started and ended well for Button. On Friday McLaren’s new number 3 topped the time sheets at the end of Free Practice 1, 0.245 seconds ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton and 0.907 seconds ahead of the closest Red Bull in the form of Mark Webber.

In another rain affected session in FP2, McLaren did limited running due to a lack of spare parts and setting a fast time was not high on the agenda, so when the team began Saturday morning, it wasn’t a surprise to see Hamilton quickest and Button just 0.225 seconds behind in fourth.

That form continued into qualifying with Hamilton just pipping Button for pole position, but all the indications were that a McLaren was best placed for victory once the lights went out on Sunday.

Button spoke after qualifying and was clearly in a confident mood: I think the whole team is really happy to have both cars on the front row – it?s been a long time coming to have the two of us there together. You always want to be first, but I couldn?t quite do that today.’ he said to formula1.com, adding: ‘Tomorrow is the important day, and today is about making life easier for tomorrow. Still, this has been a great day for everyone in the team.?

Lining up on the front row certainly made lift easy for Button and when Hamilton struggled for traction at the start, Button was in the right place to take advantage in lead the race from turn one to the chequered flag.

Button appeared to have more in reserve throughout the race, team-mate Lewis Hamilton simply didn’t have any response to Button during the early laps of the race and in the closing stages when Vettel would put in a quick lap, Button would beat it next time by, just to send out a message that the Red Bull driver was wasting his time.

It completed a faultless drive for Button.

?Every victory means a lot – but today shows just how important it was to have a strong winter. The starts of the past two seasons have both been tricky for us, so today is really encouraging. The guys at the circuit and all the men and women back in Woking have done an amazing job to get us here. Today means a lot to me, and I?m sure it?ll mean a lot to all of them too: it?ll make those extra hours worked in the early hours of the morning all the more worthwhile, because we know we can do great things with this car.

Button concluded by adding: ‘There?s a huge amount of positives to take away from this weekend: we?ve got a great car and we can fight for the world championships. This is a perfect start to my season and I?m already looking forward to Malaysia.?

Now there is a message for the remainder of the paddock, including team-mate Lewis Hamilton.