Jenson Button was the first of the Honda Racing F1 Team's drivers home in this afternoon's Italian Grand Prix, when he finished the 53-lap race in 15th position. His team-mate Rubens Barrichello finished in 17th place.
The team made substantial changes to the set-up of Button's car overnight; therefore he started the race from the pitlane rather than his 19th place grid slot, while Barrichello made small adjustments to his set-up as well.
Wet conditions resulted in the race starting behind the Safety Car and both Barrichello and Button immediately gained a position when Bourdais failed to leave the grid, so they were in 15th and 18th places when the race went green at the start of lap three.
Barrichello was the first driver to pit, on lap 16, and switched from the extreme wets to the wet tyres. He rejoined the race in 18th place, ahead of what was one of the longest middle stints of any driver.
Button then made his first stop on lap 22 and also switched to the wet tyres, emerging 10 seconds behind his team-mate.
Both the Brazilian and the Briton then drove strong middle stints on a drying track and progressed up to ninth and 11th positions respectively by the time of their final pitstops.
For Barrichello, the team elected to put on dry tyres in the hope of stealing a march on his rivals in the closing stages. Unfortunately, the track wasn't quite dry enough and he slipped back through the order to finish 17th.
Button kept his wet tyres at his second stop which was the correct decision as he recorded very competitive lap times until the finish, when he crossed the line in 15th position.
An interesting race in terms of strategy but you were not able to make much progress today?
"We decided to start the race from the pit lane today as it may have given us an advantage with tyre choice, however when the race started behind the safety car it just meant that my tyres and brakes were very cold. The first couple of laps were quite difficult with the amount of spray and I lost a place which was disappointing. Then I got stuck behind Coulthard in the middle of the race when my lap times were good, which compromised my race quite badly. The last stint was a lot of fun though as we left the very worn wet tyres on and I had a couple of purple middle sectors. But at the end of the day it was disappointing to come home in 15th position and we have not had a good weekend here."
Timo Glock: "Overall it was just quite a difficult day for us. I made a good start but I lost a couple of seconds soon afterwards when I spun as I tried to overtake Alonso. Early on it was very hard to see through all the spray when the track was at its wettest. It was hard to attack but I still managed to pull off some moves. Then the extra stop cost us the chance to go for points. It's obviously a shame to finish where we did but we were unlucky and our pace shows we can score again in the coming races."
Jarno Trulli: "In the wet conditions early on I was going well on the heavy wet tyres but we had no luck with the strategy because the timings just didn't work out for us today. When I came in for my pit stop it was still four or five laps too soon for standard wet tyres. That meant we had to pit again shortly afterwards and we lost everything. Later on I was not as competitive because I was sliding around. So it was not our day today. Still, we were expecting this to be a difficult race but the next few races might be better for us. So I remain optimistic because we still have a lot of points to score and the season has been good so far."
Tadashi Yamashina, Team Principal:"Everybody did their best today but the weather did not help us. We qualified well and we went for a one-stop strategy. Unfortunately we were in exactly the wrong window because the teams who did two stops and the teams on a longer one-stop strategy could both time their stops better. We were caught in the middle, just like Nico Rosberg's Williams. Still, we were very quick in the first stint with the extreme wet tyres, the drivers did well and the car's performance was good. But there was not much more we could do today. Congratulations to Toro Rosso for their first win in Formula 1. Now we must look for a better return from the remaining races this year."