Jenson Button likened his Super GT title triumph to his 2009 Formula 1 World Championship success after wrapping up his rookie season in the category with a crowning moment on Sunday. Button and teammate Naoki Yamamoto finished third at Motegi to wrap up the GT500 title.
Button is the first rookie to win in the top tier of Super GT in 13 years, while his triumph for Kunimitsu Nissan was the manufacturer's first title since 2011.
The Briton and Yamamoto won the title by just three points from TOM'S Lexus' Nick Cassidy and Ryo Hirakawa, who finished within two seconds of Button's car after a late surge.
Button won the F1 title in Brawn GP's sole year of existence as a mastery of aerodynamic regulations left the rest of the field standing, and the 38-year-old saw similarities in this year and that one.
"That was a tough race," Button said. "They are never easy and that's what makes it extra-special.
"This championship is one of the toughest in the world. That's coming from someone who has raced in F1 for so many years.
"I feel a bit like visitor to this team because these guys have been fighting for so long.
"I couldn't be happier. It's a long time coming from me.
"The last championship I won was nine years ago. That was quite a big one, and this for me at the moment feels just as big. This is so important."
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