Button samples Mount Panorama track in a Formula One car 22 Mar 2011
McLarens Jenson Button became the first driver to tackle Australias iconic Mount Panorama circuit in a Formula One race car on Tuesday. Button completed five laps of the legendary Bathurst track at the wheel of an MP4-23 before handing the car over to five-time Bathurst champion Craig Lowndes.
This place is fantastic, Button said. Television just doesnt do it justice. That was phenomenal. It was such a rush. Once you get over the straights being quite hard to control the car over it is such a pleasure. I was holding on tight all the way. It takes everything out of you.
As a driver you have your favourite tracks. Like Macau and Silverstone for instance. But this is the one I havent had the possibility of driving. It was the experience Ive wanted to have for many years and Ive finally done it. In a way its probably not a good thing because its made me hungrier to come back.
The unique event, which was organised by Vodafone with the support of Bathurst Council, was inspired by Button himself. After taking Jamie Whincups V8 Supercar for a spin around Melbournes Albert Park circuit last year, he declared his desire to sample The Mountain. The Briton also had the chance to experience the track in a V8 car.
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