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Well that's more like it. Who said F1 was boring? What a race. I would love to be a fly on the wall in the McLaren team debrief now. Congratulations Jenson - that early pit call was a big one but it worked. The race report is now up, have a look
I'm going to rest this smoking keyboard, it needs to cool down. The F1 forum is continuing on the Red Button and at the top of this page. A re-run of the race is on BBC One at 1300 BST. The gorgeous Sam Lyon is in the chair for Malaysia next weekend while unfortunately for you lot, I'll be back for China. Thanks for the messages this weekend. Take care.
Race winner Jenson Button:
"When I entered the pit lane I thought I'd made a catastrophic decision as it was soaking in there but I managed to overtake three or four cars because their tyres were still very dry. It's very special, it's taken me a while to get to grips inside the car but the team have really welcomed me. It's very difficult to put into words but it is a very special feeling."
Gordon Ramsay on 606:
"Button 1-1 Hamilton, roll on Malaysia. By the way, can we race at Australia every week?"
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh
is very emotional as he is interviewed after the race, I want to give him a hug. He says: "It was a fantastic race by Jenson, in truth he called that first stop and it got him the win, it was his bravery to make that call. With Lewis we made a team call which disadvantaged him but it was a fantastic job by Jenson, we're happy with that one. It's been a tough start to the year we knew we'd win some races and we won this one. He won that by his racing and his call on the tyres, he got it spot on."
Lewis Hamilton is not happy, he tells BBC One:
"I probably had one of the drives of my life but unfortunately due to the strategy I got put back and I was taken out by Mark Webber. I drove my heart out today and I think I deserved better. The strategy was not right. Everyone else in front of me did one stop and I did two."
Arnie_Aardvark on 606:
"The only way Lewis Hamilton is going to win the F1 championship again is to leave McLaren, yet again they sabotaged his race by bringing him in for a tyre change."
Here's the completed line-up - Pedro de la Rosa, Kovalainen and Chandhok. The Hispania driver completes his first grand prix.
Anthem time. Button is as cool as a cucumber as he stands on the podium. He looks as if he has just had a gentle stroll around the park. Easy job this. The premier of Victoria gets a chorus of boos as he gives the trophy to the Brit. Tough crowd these Aussies.
Button squeezes himself out of the cockpit, stands on the front of the car and bows as he receives a generous round of applause. That's his eighth win. The Ferrari crew are also there to congratulate him. Nice touch.
What a drive from Button. He tells his team "I feel so good" as he celebrates his first victory for McLaren. Kubica was second with Massa third. Alonso ended fourth, followed by Rosberg, Hamilton, Liuzzi, Barrichello, Webber, Schumacher and Alguersuari.
JENSON BUTTON WINS THE AUSTRALIAN GRAND PRIX Lap 58:
Button is coasting to victory.
Disaster for Hamilton and Webber. Hamilton tries to overtake Alonso on the outside at Turn 13. He does not make it, however, and Webber misses his braking point completely to shove the Briton off the track into the gravel. Webber limps back to the pits for a new front wing.
Lap 56: WEBBER AND HAMILTON CRASH Lap 55:
Schumacher finally takes Alguersuari for 11th. I'm sure that is what he was envisaging when he decided to return. Hamilton tells his team that coming in a second time was a "terrible idea".
Button leads by 17.7 seconds, it's a cruise. Massa is just 1.1 seconds behind second-placed Kubica.
Hamilton informs his radio "my tyres have gone off" but is told to keep going by his engineer. There's not a lot he can do now. He is still behind fourth-placed Alonso.
Button rattles off a 1:29.291 and is 18.5 seconds ahead. Toro Rosso's Jaime Alguersuari in 11th is really frustrating Schumacher.
Hamilton is all over Alonso but is getting a lot of dirty air so will have to wait for the moment. Webber is just 0.4 seconds behind Hamilton.
Alonso is told by his radio how close Hamilton is to him, the Spaniard replies: "I do not want to know!". Quote of the day. Button is 17.4 seconds clear.
Hamilton is really pressurising Alonso now, he's 1.5 seconds behind. When the other cars were pitting, Alonso asked earlier why he did not come in as well and will be fuming now that he didn't.
Button leads by 16.5 seconds, Kubica is second - one second ahead of Massa. Hamilton is 3.4 seconds behind Alonso. Webber, in sixth, sets the fastest lap of the race - a 1:28.358 seconds.
Right then, fifth-placed Hamilton is now 4.6 seconds behind Alonso. That is going to be a fascinating finish. Schumacher is down in 12th place and not really going anywhere.
Massa is told that he must overtake Kubica as Hamilton is catching - that's the long way of saying get a shove on. Should he let Alonso through? Button leads Kubica by 15.8 seconds.
Hamilton is told by his team that he will catch Alonso by the end of the race as their "tyres are old". Apparently rain is due in 13 minutes - at 0830 BST.
Alonso is being hunted down by Hamilton - the gap closes to 11 seconds.
Hamilton is 14.4 seconds off Alonso, who is still behind Massa. Button leads by 14.2 seconds. This is looking like a repeat of his win here last year.
Sebastian Vettel talking to BBC pit-lane reporter Holly Samos:
"There's not much I can say, I had a brake failure at 13 and earlier in the lap I had felt vibrations. Conditions were very difficult but to finish first, you have to finish first - we are all pushing and trying to do our best, it's nobody's fault but we need to get on top of it (reliability) to make sure we have a solid race and see the chequered flag in Malaysia."
Button is leading Kubica by 13.5 seconds while Vettel gets a consoling arm from Red Bull team boss Christian Horner on the pit wall. Shocking luck for the German.
Hamilton is closing on Alonso - the gap between them is now 17.5 seconds.
Sixth-placed Webber is the quickest man on the track after a 1:28.737.
Fastest lap now from Hamilton - a 1:28.754 but he is 20.5 seconds behind fourth-placed Alonso. Button leads by 12 seconds.
Hamilton goes wide at Turn 13, Webber sneaks past but the Briton claims fifth back. It's Button from Kubica followed by Massa and Alonso.
Webber is on the move in sixth, the Australian setting a 1:29.806. Button leads by 11.1 seconds.
Rosberg and Webber race wheel to wheel as Rosberg exits the pits. Button sets the fastest time of 1:30.201. Hamilton comes in.
Rosberg comes in. Button leads by 9.2 seconds from Kubica.
Hamilton has a long look at Kubica at Turn One but no cigar. Button is 8.1 seconds ahead while Alonso is still in sixth behind team-mate Massa. Webber comes into the pits. Vettel told his team that it was a brake failure that caused his exit.
Button sets a 1:30.871 to extend the gap by 6.9 seconds. This is his to lose. Vettel was apparently complaining of a vibration before his incident.
Lucas Di Grassi retires. Button leads by 5.8 seconds, Kubica is under pressure from Hamilton. Then it's Rosberg, Webber and Massa.
Button is pushing on and sets his fastest lap of 1:31.003 to lead Kubica by 5.1 seconds.
Webber takes Massa at Turn Three for fifth. Button is first and leads Kubica by 3.7 seconds. Hamilton is third with Rosberg fourth.
Vettel is in the gravel, we have not seen what happened yet. Hamilton produces a stunning move on the outside of Turn 11 to overtake Rosberg. Breathtaking. Rosberg tries to get back at him at Turn 13 but the yellow flag comes out because of Vettel and the German has to hold back.
Massa is told by his radio that it is the last corner which is causing him problems.
Massa weaves dangerously in front of Webber heading into Turn 11 and 12. That Ferrari is not happy. Vettel leads Button by 4.3 seconds.
And so it passes, Hamilton takes Massa on the inside at Turn One but loses a bit of his front wing on the pit straight.
Massa is under a lot of pressure from Hamilton now, making a hash of the final Turn 16. He won't hold that place for long.
Hamilton is trying to close in on Massa for fifth - that should be tasty - while Vettel leads by 4.6 seconds.
Vettel's lead over Button is now 4.4 seconds. Kubica is third and then it is Rosberg, Massa, Hamilton, Alonso and Webber.
Alonso sets the fastest lap but Webber, in eighth, sets the fastest lap of 1:30.639.
Drama at the start of the lap as Massa is overtaken by both Webber and Hamilton. Hamilton then goes past Webber for sixth, with the Australian running wide at Turn Three. Massa then dives in on the inside of Hamilton. Vettel's lead is now 3.1 seconds.
Alonso is flying now and sets the fastest time of 1:31.574.
Alonso overtakes Barrichello and is in eighth. Vettel is taking Button at the moment, the lead is 3.2 seconds. Kubica is told that this light rain will last for five minutes.
Vettel stretches his lead to 2.4 seconds after a fastest lap of 1:31.856. Alonso is in ninth but is moving up.
Hamilton's team tell the Brit to attack Webber as his tyres are cold. Sutil retires. Vettel sets the fastest time - 1:32.439.
Webber is not having a good time of it as he goes wide when coming out of the pits. Vettel leads Button by one second, then it is Kubica, Rosberg and then Massa, who had to be kept in for five or six seconds in the pits because of traffic.
Webber comes in. Petrov is out of the race after finding the gravel.
Vettel comes in, Webber stays out. Button is flying and has set another fastest lap - 1:37.701. He is in third. It's Webber from Sutil.
Massa, Rosberg, both Renaults, Schumacher, Alonso, Barrichello and Hamilton all come in at the end of the lap. The Red Bulls have stayed out. Vettel leads Webber by one second. Button sets the fastest lap of 1:39.126, two seconds quicker than Vettel.
Button immediately loses grip and slides off momentarily. Did he come in too soon? Vettel's team says rain will come back in 15 minutes.
Hamilton takes team-mate Button at Turn Three and is now up to sixth. Button comes in for slicks and the soft option is put on.
Vettel gets a move on when the safety car comes in. Kubica is over Webber like a cheap suit at Turn One but the Australian holds his place. Schumacher is battling to get past the Virgin of Lucas di Grassi.
After Button, it's Hamilton, Sutil, Barrichello, Petrov and Pedro de la Rosa. Lotus technical chief Mike Gascoyne says there will not be too many more laps before dry tyres are put on. The safety car comes in.
The safety car was brought out because of a big shunt involving BMW Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi, Hulkenberg and Buemi. By the way, Trulli never managed to start. Told you this could be tasty.
Replays of the start show that Button's left front hit Alonso's right rear and the Spaniard then collided with Schumacher. It's Vettel from Massa then Webber, Kubica, Rosberg and Button. Safety car still out.
Chaos. There seems to a collision at Turn Three. Sebastien Buemi and Nico Hulkenberg are in the gravel. Schumacher has damaged his front wing and has to return to the pits. Safety car.
Alonso spins at the first corner. Vettel leads from Massa. Hamilton is up to eighth.
Formation lap. There's a total of 58 laps, over 307.574 km and we are about to start. Hold on to your hats...
Schumacher is not asking Alonso if he wants a cup of tea
The BBC team reveal that seven-time champion Michael Schumacher had a little chat with Alonso and Hamilton after qualifying on Saturday as he felt he was blocked. The German also had words with F1 race director Charlie Whiting about the incidents. Schumacher is told over his team radio that this rain will last for the next 15 minutes. Not long now, ready?
Martin Brundle somewhat stitched up his mate David Coulthard during their grid walk there by mentioning that he was about to return to the race track this season, prompting DC to add a hasty: "Well, I'm hoping to race in the DTM (with Mercedes), but I haven't actually signed a contract yet!"
It is starting to rain quite heavily now. "Properly chucking it down," according to BBC pit lane reporter Ted Kravitz
. Jarno Trulli's Lotus has had to leave the grid with hydraulics problems, the team are working on it but Kravitz says that it looks "pretty terminal".
BBC Sport's Sarah Holt in Melbourne:
"I'm sorry to break it to you Orlo but there's been no sign of Jim Kerr in the hectic Melbourne paddock. He's probably gargling saltwater ahead of the free Simple Minds gig which happens in Albert Park straight after the race. Hollywood A-lister John Travolta is strutting his stuff again while Australian singer Gabriella Cilmi - who is singing the national anthem at the GP - was slinky in a black dress, and former Westlife crooner Brian McFadden has also been lurking as he was last year."I can't believe it, no Kerr. I'm a broken man.
Renault's Vitaly Petrov is locked in some pretty intense chat with his crew on the grid and after a little wait, Coulthard loses patience and ploughs on in there. Petrov has never raced at Albert Park before and told the BBC that his only experience was by playing the circuit on a PlayStation*. You and me both mate. Oh, and it's now raining. That will spice things up.* other games consoles are available.
F1 pundit David Coulthard on Lewis Hamilton:
"If it's a dry race he's not going to win from 11th but if there is some flash rain then anything can happen."
It's the grid walk. Ace. David Coulthard, whose purple shirt is very co-ordinated with Jake's by the way, is roped into the walk with Martin Brundle. No celebs at present, however, although they do manage to get Heikki Kovalainen of the Lotus team.
BBC Sport's Sarah Holt in Melbourne:
Gascoyne demonstrates his needlework skills
"Lotus technical director Mike Gascoyne has been grappling with adding a modified rear wing, an updated lower wing and a modified bargeboards this weekend. He reckons those updates are worth 0.2 seconds per lap in Melbourne and he's confident both his drivers can finish the race again. So, he's got enough on his plate but it's all hands to the deck as the rookie team prepares for just its second race in Australia. Gascoyne was roped in for a spot of sewing on Heikki Kovalainen's racesuit, though he did get his partner Silvi to finish off his needlework for him."
BBC Sport's Sarah Holt has written an excellent blog on the three new teams that have entered F1 this year. It's a great read, have a gander
Talking of the new teams, both Virgin cars will start from the pit lane as they say "we've changed the fuel collectors to optimize fuel pick-up".
So, who is going to come home with the spoils today? Will Vettel claim his first win of the season, will Webber delight the Melbourne crowd, will Alonso make it two out of two, or will the winner come from elsewhere? Have your say by text on 81111
(UK) or +44 7786200666
(worldwide), tweet me on
Red Bull driver Seb Vettel:
"It's more exciting if you don't know what is going to happen. I don't think Mark Webber will do a sneaky move at the first corner, the race is longer than one corner and one lap. Traditionally there are lot of things happening here, we have to have a tidy race."
elliotbaum on Twitter:
"The birds are singing and I haven't slept. Should I be worried... I think not I have the Australian Grand Prix!"
So it's the two Red Bulls at the front of grid after an impressive display in qualifying. However, Vettel started from pole in Bahrain but finished fourth after a spark plug problem. Bahrain winner Fernando Alonso is poised to strike from third while McLaren's Jenson Button is fourth. Nico Rosberg out-qualified Mercedes team-mate Michael Schumacher again and will start from sixth while McLaren's Lewis Hamilton, following his little run-in with the
boys in blue,
had a disappointing qualifying and is down in 11th.
There has been plenty of chat about the, say we say lacklustre, race in Bahrain but here are a few reasons why that will not be the case today. Firstly, Melbourne has the capability of producing races as bonkers as Bjork. Last year, Jenson Button claimed victory while
Vettel and Robert Kubica
staged their own demolition derby while in 2008, Lewis Hamilton
won a race
that saw only seven drivers take the chequered flag. Throw in some new teams that could form mobile chicanes around the Albert Park circuit as well a healthy sprinkling of Kamui Kobayashi and you have a unpredictable recipe that would make Heston Blumenthal's hair stand on end. If he had any, of course.
Ferrari on Twitter:
"The big question mark is the rain. There is a high chance of light rain during the race. Covered skies at the moment..."
tomccollins on Twitter:
"Been up since 5am due to a clock change misunderstanding with my iPhone. BBC News 24 is only so much fun - bring on F1!"
Right then, here's the plan for today. The race starts at 0700 BST, oh it feels nice writing that, with coverage starting at 0600 BST on BBC One. The programme will be streamed at the top of this page. I'm personally looking forward to seeing who has got the tight white slacks on today. It must be Jake's turn surely? There is also coverage with Crofty on BBC Radio 5 live starting at 0630 BST. Lovely.
From Lynne in Cambridge via text on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide):
"Sitting waiting for the programme to start with my little boy who is three and poorly with the chickenpox. Good luck! And come on Red Bull and JB!"
From Daniel in Southgate via text on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide):
"I'm walking home from a night out, hoping to be home in time for the start. Come on Jenson!"
Here's the first missive of the day from our very own Sarah Holt in Melbourne
. She didn't manage to get me Simple Minds frontman Jim Kerr on Saturday but I think the photo of John Travolta more than made up for it.
Here she is: "Hello again. Early mornings in the UK and late nights at the track in Melbourne, hasn't it seemed like a long build-up to the Australian Grand Prix? At last, it's race day but, oh no, it's grey and gloomy at Albert Park. Red Bull driver Mark Webber starts on the front row alongside team-mate and pole-sitter Sebastian Vettel and the Australian reckons rain could be a crucial factor in deciding the race. It's been drizzly since lunch-time and more rain and high winds are forecast later. If the cars race in those conditions, they'll have to contend with slippery white lines, crosswinds and the possibility of a safety car. Tyre choice will also be crucial as neither the wets or intermediates are expected to last long on full tanks of fuel. If you wanted excitement in Melbourne, a bit of rainy weather might just make sure you get it."
Welcome one and all to our coverage of the Australian Grand Prix, and to British Summer Time. Yey! However, it did not feel like summer this morning during my chilly ride in while the tired and emotional of London staggered home. I think I'm getting old. I hope you managed to get some sleep and are fully refreshed for a bit of Melbourne madness.
At the very top level, the key is to have poise, balance, control, as well as the ability to cope with the most intense of pressures in front of an audience of millions... but that's enough about tonight's Dancing On Ice final. We've got a grand prix to watch.