Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel has won the Malaysian Grand Prix, after holding off the challenge of the Mercedes pair of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg in Sepang.
Formula One: McLaren fail again as both cars are eliminated in Q1 in Malaysia
Nico Rosberg’s uncomfortable exchange with Lewis Hamilton after claims German blocked teammate
Lewis Hamilton secures second pole of the season, but Sebastian Vettel is right on his tail
The four-time World Champion gained his first victory for the Italian team at the second attempt, despite starting the race behind Hamilton.
It was the current World Champion that got the best start off the line, while the German struggled to hold off countryman Rosberg who had qualified in third.
There was drama within the first couple of laps, but it was Vettel’s teammate Kimi Raikkonen who suffered. He sustained a puncture after being clipped by rookie Felipe Nasr.
When Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson spun off early on in the race, the safety car was called upon, which sent both Mercedes into the pits, but Vettel stayed out, and took the lead.
And while Hamilton returned to the front once the Ferrari driver pitted, the pace of the stop – just 2.4 seconds – meant that the German was ready to pounce on the Brit’s next stop for a lead he would not relinquish.
Meanwhile there was drama as Lotus’s Romain Grosjean was sent spinning by Force India’s Sergio Perez. The Mexican was given a ten second penalty for the altercation.
And it was another poor weekend for McLaren-Honda, who followed up yesterday’s terrible qualifying sesson with both Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button being forced into retirement.
But nothing was to deny Sebastian Vettel winning for the fourth time at the track, as he returned to the top step of the podium for the 40th time of his career.