F1's Jenson Button sets world record for fastest reflexes

Racing driver beats former holder, Iranian Arshia Shahriari

Jenson Button is presented with a Guinness World Records certificate. PA
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Former F1 champion Jenson Button has tested his racing driver's reflexes by breaking a Guinness World Record, a feat that he said felt like “adding a new trophy to the collection”.

Button, who was at the pinnacle of racing for nearly two decades, was challenged by streaming service NOW to break the record, which involves striking target lights that light up randomly on a Batak board.

The reflex record had been held for four years by Arshia Shahriari from Iran, who racked up 56 strikes in 30 seconds. Button hit 58.

“I set my unofficial record in my 20s so it’s great to see that I’ve still got it, 20 years later.”

The former McLaren driver said he had beaten seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton on the Batak board, but Button suggested it was due to his longer reach.

Joanne Brent, Guinness World Records official adjudicator, said: “I’ve seen countless record attempts but Jenson Button’s achievement in extinguishing 58 Batak lights in 30 seconds was very impressive.

“Breaking this record requires not only lightning-fast reaction times but also the ability to maintain focus and rely on peripheral vision, as Jenson demonstrated.

Button beat the record of Arshia Shahriari from Iran, who racked up 56 strikes in 30 seconds.

“It’s a testament to his skill as a race driver and a reminder that breaking records isn’t just about physical ability, but also mental discipline and strategy.”

Button's last F1 race was in 2017. He won the F1 world championship in 2009 and claimed 50 podiums during his career.

With the 2023 season set to begin in Bahrain on March 3, the Briton is predicting a three-way race for the title.

“We’re looking at one of the most exciting seasons yet with Max [Verstappen], Lewis and the guys at Ferrari”, he said.

“It’s definitely looking like a three-way race for the championship this year and I can’t wait to see who comes out on top.”

Updated: February 28, 2023, 1:52 PM