Jenson Button said that taking pole for the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa was 'almost like a win' after the McLaren man qualified at the head of the field for the first time since 2009.

Button was in imperious form during the session as he set no fewer than three laps that would have been quick enough to earn him top spot in qualifying as he secured his first pole in McLaren colours.

"It's been a long time since my last pole in 2009," he said. "It's been pretty emotional. Sunday's have been quite good for me in the last few years but Saturday's haven't been.

"It was a great session and important to come back from the break with a good result. The race is tomorrow but this is almost like winning a race for me because it's been so long!"

Button added that pole was the result of the team finding him a good balance with the car as he now seeks to try and convert pole into victory in his 50th race for the team.

"We got the balance right this morning and car been working well all day," he said. "We all had limited running but on every run, the balance has been good and we tickled it in qualifying. The balance is to my liking and I have a style that is difficult to have a car that works for me in qualifying. But when it does I get pole.

"A big thank you to the team and although it will be easier tomorrow, it's still going to be a hard day."