MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Jenson Button led qualifying Saturday for the Formula One season-opening Australian Grand Prix, making the Brawn team the first in 39 years to take pole position on debut.
Button's time of 1 minute, 26.202 seconds edged out his teammate Rubens Barrichello by 0.30 seconds in Saturday's qualifying session.
It is the fourth pole position of Button's career, and the first since the 2006 Australian GP.
Before Saturday, the last team to secure pole in its debut race was Tyrrell at the 1970 Canadian Grand Prix.
It is a remarkable turnaround for the former Honda team. The Japanese automaker pulled out of F1 because of the cost in December, and there was doubt whether the team members and drivers had any future in the sport until team principal Ross Brawn completed a takeover earlier in the month