If you had to guess what the weather would be like at the Malaysian Grand Prix, you would be safe betting that it is 91 degrees with a track temperature of 131 degrees Fahrenheit. If you forgot that a world championship title could be won this weekend, then you haven’t been following the Constructors’ Championship very closely because that’s exactly what Mercedes was poised to do in the Malaysian heat.
It all became a moot point for Mercedes at turn one and on lap 41 when Nico Rosberg was spun, sending him to the back, and Lewis Hamilton’s engine blew up respectively. It looked certain to be a Mercedes one, two but as it all turned out, it became a Red Bull one, two with Daniel Ricciardo winning the Malaysian Grand Prix just ahead of his 19-year-old teammate, Max Verstappen.
It was a tough day for Lewis who looked sublime and in complete control of the race until his engine let go and equally, his teammate made a masterful recovery drive even garnering a 10-second penalty in the process to claim a podium finish for third and extended his points lead in the Drivers’ Championship to 23 points over Hamilton.
A big win for Red Bull who looked good all weekend covering the Ferrari’s pace and setting very impressive long-run times. They needed attrition from Mercedes in order to win the race and that’s exactly what they got when Lewis Hamilton’s engine failed. Red Bull passed the champagne-filled shoe around the podium and celebrated in style. They also put on a great show by racing each other in a very respectful manner without creating a Mutli-21 debacle.
A win for Nico Rosberg who came from 17th, after being clouted by Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel at turn one, lap one, and claimed third to extend his points lead over Lewis Hamilton.
Big win for Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg finishing sixth and eighth and extending Force India’s Constructors lead over Williams who was represented very well in 5th by Valtteri Bottas.
A win for Renault F1 and Jolyon Palmer who scored the final point in 10th place even when his teammate had to retire due to a damaged car. A much needed point for Renault and a much needed result for Palmer.
A win for McLaren who looked much improved and got both cars in the top ten. Fernando Alonso’s 7th and Jenson Button’s 9th was a good result for the team and an improved Honda power unit. A shame to see such talent like Alonso and Button toiling in the mid-field. Alonso did the same thing he did at Spa, came from the back of the grid to finish high In the points…imagine if he had a competitive car.
A Fail for Mercedes with a new engine failure on Lewis’s car and another fail for Lewis dog-whistling conspiracy in the press. No one likes to lose due to a mechanical failure and no one likes to have more failures than their teammate but it happens in F1. Massa, Barrichello, Webber, Vettel, Rosberg all have had their years with more mechanical issues than their teammates.
A fail for Haas F1 with both cars out of the race as Romain Grosjean had brake failure and Esteban Gutierrez had an errant wheel which incurred a penalty.
A fail for Toro Rosso who couldn’t manage to get either car in the points but it wasn’t a circuit that was going to flatter their year-old Ferrari engines.
A WTH moment for Sebastian Vettel who replicated the Verstappen move from a few weeks ago—that garnered much derision for the young Dutchman—by slotting down the inside of Max and Nico Rosberg only to hit his countryman’s car spinning him and taking his own race car out of the race. Seb garnered a 3-place grid penalty for the Japanese Grand Prix.
Not quite sure what was going on with the start lights or why there was such a delay but that was a bit odd and you know how F1 cars hate to sit stationary.
MALAYSIAN GP RESULTS
|1||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||56||1h37m12.776s|
|2||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||56||2.443s|
|6||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||56||1m03.794s|
|8||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||56||1m14.062s|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||56||1m38.878s|
|12||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||55||1 Lap|
|13||Felipe Massa||Williams/Mercedes||55||1 Lap|
|14||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||55||1 Lap|
|15||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor/Mercedes||55||1 Lap|
|16||Esteban Ocon||Manor/Mercedes||55||1 Lap|