Button: "I don't think Vettel's a liar"


A third win of the season and a fifth podium in a row: for Jenson Button, victory at Suzuka felt almost as good as a home win at Silverstone: "It was a tough race – the last five or six laps were extremely difficult. I had to be careful with my tyres and conserve fuel – it was an amazing win."

Yet at the start, it didn't look like it was going to be the Englishman's day. "As I saw it, Sebastian [Vettel] was a bit more forceful than necessary at the start," said Button. "I got off the line well, while Seb didn't. I think he noticed that straightaway and moved across."

Button tried to counter: "I used as much KERS as possible to attack on the inside, but he just kept coming across. I thought he would stop at some point, but he didn't." Instead, Button ran out of track: "I hit the grass and had to back off, otherwise there would have been a massive accident at the first corner."

Vettel's view of the start: "I didn't push him onto the grass. At first, I thought that I'd had a very good start. I knew it wasn't perfect, but I knew it was good because I was pulling away from Lewis." This made him think that, with Button being on the dirty side, the other McLaren wouldn't have had a good start either: "So I moved to the right - that's instinctive when you start from pole."

Button was surprised to hear that Vettel might not have seen him: "He said he didn't see me until I backed off. So I lost a place, but it was quite nice, to fight my way back. Two drivers will always have differing opinions on an incident, but I'm going to take his word for it because I don't think he's a liar. In the heat of the moment, I expected a penalty. After such a good start, losing a place was very frustrating." Which then made his ultimate victory all the sweeter.

F1 Japanese GP 2011

F1 Japanese GP 2011