Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Brawn Title Fight to Be a 'Friendly One'

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Brawn Title Fight to Be a 'Friendly One'

Article excerpt

JENSON Button and Rubens Barrichello both believe their friendship can stand the heat of a fierce world title fight.

For the fourth time this year Brawn GP scored a one-two finish, but for the first time it was Barrichello who led home team-mate Button yesterday for his third Italian Grand Prix win and the 11th race victory of his career.

The Brazilian has now out-scored the Briton by 22 points to 10 in the last three races, closing the gap at the top of the standings to 14 with four races left.

Both were naturally ebullient after this success as the team displayed a remarkable return to form, pretty much ending Red Bull Racing's championship hopes.

With Mark Webber punted off the track by BMW Sauber's Robert Kubica on the opening lap and Sebastian Vettel picking up only one point - thanks to Lewis Hamilton's last-lap crash - they are now 26 and 28.5 points adrift.

There were smiles, backslaps and handshakes between the Brawn two as soon as the race had ended and as they made their way to the podium, but the question is: can such camaraderie continue as the battle intensifies? "I don't know. I've put on a brave face lately, but I absolutely hate this guy who doesn't know his a**e from his elbow when it comes to racing cars!" joked Button.

"We've a good relationship and we've been team-mates for many years now. We're working together. We've had to pull our car to the front and we will see how it goes from here but I think we're still going to be sharing information.

"Obviously, when we go on the circuit we're fierce rivals. We're not going to give up until the end. I've obviously the advantage of 14 points, which has got smaller at the last couple of races, but Rubens is going to be a very tough rival."

Veteran Barrichello may have the edge in terms of experience, with the 37-yearold knowing what is required with the scrap heading for the trenches, but he insisted neither man is looking to fight dirty. "If it is between us two, there's the old saying that you can only win in Formula One if you're tough," remarked Barrichello. …

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