Ferrari was finally back on the podium with a determined performance from both drivers delivering third place for Kimi Raikkonen with his team mate Felipe Massa right behind him to take fourth place.
But the resounding winner was once again Jenson Button, who had so much energy after winning the Monaco grand prix that he managed to run the entire distance of the pit straight to get to the podium ceremony in time. After winning the prestigious race, his fifth from six starts so far in 2009, the Brawn driver mistakenly parked into the pits, not further down the road on the straight where the top three runners assemble for the festivities.
"I'm lost for words with him really," Ross Brawn, having earlier on Sunday compared Button with Michael Schumacher, told the BBC. "He's exceeding everything I thought possible."
Button wasn't lost for words on the radio after crossing the chequered flag: "Monaco baby, yeah!" the resident of the Principality screamed. His lead over teammate Rubens Barrichello, squarely beaten and second on Sunday, is now 16 points, while the closest non-Brawn challenger, Sebastian Vettel, crashed into the barriers at Ste Devote after burning up his soft tires.
The German is now an increasingly distant 28 points behind Button with 11 races to go, meaning Button can now afford to lose a couple of points to the Red Bull at every remaining grand prix on the calendar and still win the title.
Force India, with Giancarlo Fisichella in ninth, missed scoring a point by less than two seconds, amid a spate of retirements and crashes and the awful form this weekend of the BMWs and Toyotas. Sebastian Buemi punted Nelson Piquet off, while Heikki Kovalainen and Kazuki Nakajima shunted alone, the latter Williams while negotiating the last lap.
Reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton finished twelfth and a lap down.