Vettel First In Malaysia
World champion Sebastian Vettel has continued his title defence with a second win in a row on Sunday at the Malaysian Grand Prix, coming home in one hour, 37 minutes and 39,832 seconds, three seconds faster than second Button.
Although he had had some poor free practice results, Vettel managed to come first in the qualifying round to take the pressure off Red Bull and grab the pole for Sunday’s race. Moreover, the 23-year-old German claimed his second Malaysian title as well as second of the season and third in a row. With two laps remaining, Vettel had a six-second advantage only to lose three of them during the last one due to slow celebration.
“I think first of all, we can be happy today and enjoy and try to keep that momentum, take it into next race. Two races, two out of two. Perfect. It could not be any better, but there is a long, long way to go. Lots of points still to get, so we have to keep our feet on the ground,” said Vettel afterwards.
Jenson Button came second with a 3,261 seconds gap to bring a straight second place for McLaren this season. His team-mate came second at the Aussie GP last month. Renault’s Nick Heidfeld, who had started sixth in the race, provided the biggest surprise of the day. The German came third, 25,075 seconds behind the leader, the same place his team-mate Vitaly Petrov has established at the Australian GP on March.
As for Ferrari and former world champion Fernando Alonso, they finished off the podium. The Spaniard came fifth with a 57,248 seconds gap, while his team-mate Felipe Massa arrived 36,938 seconds behind Vettel. This is also the second race after Melbourne Ferrari remain stripped of a podium place. Alonso started the race on fifth position, while the Brazilian on seventh.
Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi came seventh with a 1 minute and 6,439 seconds gap and McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton eighth with a 1 minute and 9,957 seconds gap. Michael Schumacher is no longer a favorite in the F1. The former world champion German came ninth, 1 minute an 24,896 seconds behind Vettel. Force Indian provided the tenth and 11th drivers as Paul Di Resta was followed by team-mate Adrian Sutil. They were also the last to finish the race faster than one lap.
Mercedes’s Nico Rosberg, Toro Rosso’s Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari and Lotus’s Heikki Kovalainen have all finished one lap behind the leader. Virgin’s Timo Glock came 16th with a two-lap gap, while Renault’s Vitaly Petrov was the first not to finish the race. The unfinished list has also included Hispania’s Vitantonio Liuzii and Narain Karthikeyan, Williams’s Rubens Barrichello and Pastor Maldonado, Virgin’s Jerome d’Ambrosio, Lotus’s Jarno Trulli and Sauber’s Sergio Perez.
Sebastian Vettel leads the drvier standings with 50 points, being followed by Jenson Button and Mewis Hamilton with 26 and 22 points respectively. German’s team-mate Webber is fourth with the same number of points as Hamilton, while Fernando Alonso is fifth with 20 points.
The team table is also led by Red Bull with 72 points. McLaren stay second with 48 points this season, while Ferrari are third with 36 points, having Renault right behind them with 30 points. Mercedes lie eighth with 2 points, while Virgin and Lotus are bottom with zero points.11