Posted on March 29, 2013


At the distance of a week and with plenty of reaction from the key players to sift through, it is a good moment now to consider what human motives lay behind the two dramas we saw at the end of the Malaysian Grand Prix, involving the observation and non-observation of team orders within the Mercedes and Red Bull teams. There have been all sorts of speculative stories about what happens next and the long term consequences, especially with regards to the Webber/Vettel relationship; the German paper Bild ran a story saying that Webber would leave the team at the end More…

Posted on March 25, 2013


Caterham team principal Cyril Abiteboul says he is happy with the team’s progress at this stage of the season after they scored a double-finish in the Malaysian Grand Prix. The Leafield-based team, who are already putting a lot of work into their 2014 machine, are running a hybrid car for the first three races, before introducing some updates in Bahrain. Charles Pic finished 14th, one place ahead of team-mate Giedo van der Garde in the team’s home race at Sepang. “Having both cars finish the first two races, including our home race in Malaysia, is a fair reward for the More…

Posted on March 25, 2013


Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso blamed “extremely bad luck” for his second lap retirement in the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang. The double world champion, who was competing in his 200th race, moved up a place to second at the start but broke his front wing when he tapped leader Sebastian Vettel’s Red Bull at turn two. With conditions still a few laps away from being suitable for dry weather tyres, the team decided to keep Alonso, 31, out on track to avoid having to make two stops in four laps. It was a mistake; the loads on the wing were too More…

Posted on March 24, 2013


Sebastian Vettel has won a tense Malaysian Grand Prix after edging out Red Bull team mate Mark Webber with a close move late in the race, after Webber had been told to turn down his engine and drive to the finish. As Vettel attacked on lap 46 of 56, the pair almost collided several times, but the German squeezed through for the win. Vettel apologised to Webber, but the Australian did not say that he accepted it, instead commenting that Red Bull management “protects” Vettel. Team boss Christian Horner meanwhile confirmed that Vettel had “taken things into his own hands” More…

Posted on March 25, 2012


Fernando Alonso produced a scintillating performance today, with the Ferrari strategists and pits crew making all the right moves, to win a rain hit Malaysian Grand Prix. The track has always been good to the Spaniard; he took his first pole position and podium here and has won the race twice before. But even he had to admit that he was lucky not to lose the victory in the closing stages to 22 year old Sergio Perez, who was challenging for the lead with seven laps to go but made a mistake, losing four seconds and giving Alonso breathing space More…

Posted on March 23, 2012


Free practice on Friday ahead of Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix showed that, once again, the McLarens remain the team to beat. But the Mercedes looks quick too and the Red Bulls’ long run pace hints at the threat they could pose on Sunday, as long as they don’t give up too much ground in qualifying. And after Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton’s opening round battle in Melbourne, we are set for another one here. In Melbourne Button set up his car with more wing than Hamilton’s to take care of the tyres in the race, while Hamilton took the pole. More…

Posted on March 21, 2012


This weekend F1 is straight back on track for the second round of the world championship at Sepang in Malaysia. The teams will be dealing with a different kind of track, one with high energy corners, longer straights and one that punishes the tyres far more than Melbourne. This Briefing is designed to give you the readers a closer understanding of what the teams aim to get right when approaching the race in terms of preparation and strategy planning. Our Race Strategy Calculator has now been reset with Malaysia settings. This includes a sophisticated tyre model based on the performance More…

Posted on April 11, 2011


There has been an interesting response from fans to the racing we saw yesterday in the Malaysian Grand Prix. Jenson Button, who finished second having started fourth, described the race as “confusing” with 55 pit stops to take in plus countless overtakes to try to evaluate. I said yesterday that it’s a bit like going into a sweet shop and eating half the stock, when you’ve only been used to getting a packet of Polos at best. Many fans consider this to be artificial racing, F1 on steroids in other words and didn’t find it entertaining. Sometimes you can have More…

Posted on April 10, 2011


Sebastian Vettel maintained his 100% success record this season with another win from pole position in the Malaysian Grand Prix. Jenson Button finished second and moves into that position in the championship, while Nick Heidfeld gave Renault a second consecutive podium, one which was again based on a sensational start. The race gave a very vivid example of F1 2011 style with the DRS adjustable wing and the high wear Pirelli tyres leading to a lot of overtaking, some of it absolutely thrilling. We had three cars abreast into the final corner at one point and a very spirited battle More…

Posted on April 8, 2011


Mark Webber set the fastest time in both practice sessions on the first day of the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend. The Red Bull driver headed Jenson Button by 0.005s in the second session, with Lewis Hamilton third and Sebastian Vettel fourth as Red Bull had the KERS on its car working today. The rest of the field was over a second behind, with Ferrari admitting that they are a little off the pace again. Sepang has always been a strong track for Webber – he once put a Jaguar on the front row and has outqualified team mate Sebastian Vettel More…

Posted on April 7, 2011


The second round of the world championship takes place this weekend in Sepang and there will be a lot of learn from the action on track this weekend. Melbourne gave us a partial picture, with Red Bull clearly the fastest car, McLaren in much better shape than in testing and Sauber clearly the most gentle car in its tyres. But the teams are all still on a sharp learning curve when it comes to ways of getting the most from the tyres on race day and maximising the exhaust blown diffusers, now that single diffusers are the order of the More…

Posted on April 4, 2010


After leading but failing to win the first two Grands Prix Sebastian Vettel won the Malaysian Grand Prix today at Sepang, thanks to a bold pass on his team mate the pole sitter Mark Webber at the start of the race. It was another race where the start was decisive. That move by Vettel was the key. Webber finished second, with Nico Rosberg third. Robert Kubica had another strong performance, jumping up to fourth place at the start, as in Melbourne and holding that place until the finish. And Adrian Sutil underlined Force India’s credentials with a strong drive to More…

Posted on April 3, 2010


Ferrari and McLaren were left with egg on their faces after totally misjudging the weather conditions in qualifying for the Malaysian Grand Prix. Their four drivers will start from the back of the grid after their teams held them back at the start of a rain soaked first part of qualifying. They presented an open goal to their title rivals Red Bull and Mercedes, who took full advantage. Mark Webber was the only driver to gamble on intermediate tyres in the final session and took pole by a big margin, with team mate Vettel third. Nico Rosberg did a great More…

Posted on April 2, 2010


Lewis Hamilton set the pace on the opening day of the Malaysian Grand Prix in sweltering conditions. The McLaren driver was on top in both sessions, setting a fastest time in the afternoon of 1m 34.175, ahead of Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel and Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg. The track temperature hit 51 degrees early in the afternoon session. With weather conditions unpredictable, teams worked on qualifying and long run programmes to cover the bases. The times were set on the softer of the two Bridgestone tyre compounds. In several cases drivers found that the fastest lap came on the third lap More…

Posted on April 4, 2009


This is going to be close! In Practice 3 this morning, Rosberg was fastest by a tenth, from Webber, Massa and Trulli, the three of whom were separated by a few hundredths. Then Trulli, Glock, and Vettel were all within six hundredths of each other. The question mark hangs over Brawn. There is no doubt that their margin over the rest is not what it was in Melbourne, certainly as far as single lap performance is concerned. Jenson Button’s long runs yesterday were competitive, but he has been struggling with understeer in fast corners and today he’s losing time in More…



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