Wheel failure ends farewell race for Jenson Button

Jenson Button seen with his mom ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. (Photo: Steven Tee/LAT Photographic)
Steven Tee/WPPROD

McLaren F1 driver Jenson Button received a standing ovation on Sunday after failing to finish the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

The right-front wheel on Button’s car appeared to come loose as he ran over a curb during the race. In the next braking zone, Button’s wheel fell on its side and he was unable to steer.

Fortunately, Button didn’t hit anything and he was able to make it safely back to the pits where his team hugged him and congratulated on his F1 career. He also received a standing ovation from the fans.

Button started his F1 racing career in 2000 and has competed every year since, winning the World Championship for the Brawn F1 team in 2009. At the age of 36, he is now taking a sabbatical in 2017 with the option to return to McLaren in 2018. However, it’s beginning to seem unlikely that Button will be back in the seat.

The Brit says he will continue to race in various divisions in 2017, but not full-time.