Button began karting at the age of eight and achieved early success, before progressing to car racing in the British Formula Ford Championshipand the British Formula Three Championship. He first drove in Formula One with the Williams team for the 2000 season. The following year he switched to Benetton, which in 2002 became Renault, and then for the 2003 season he moved to BAR. They were subsequently renamed Hondafor the 2006 season, during which Button won his first Grand Prix in Hungary, after 113 races.
Following the withdrawal of Honda from the sport in December 2008, he was left without a drive for the 2009 season, until Ross Brawn led amanagement buyout of the team in February 2009, and Button suddenly found himself in a highly competitive, Mercedes-engined car. He went on to win a record-equalling six of the first seven races of the 2009 season, securing the World Drivers' Championship at the Brazilian Grand Prix, having led on points all season; his success also helped Brawn GP to secure the World Constructors' Championship. For 2010, he moved toMcLaren, partnering fellow British racer and former World Champion Lewis Hamilton. After finishing fifth for the team in 2010, Button finished the2011 season as runner-up.