Malaysian Grand Prix – Race

The second race of the 2014 F1 season, Malaysia’s weather is often unpredictable. It was very wet in Qualifying yesterday; after BOT’s three-place grid penalty for impeding RIC during Q2, the grid is: HAM, VET, ROS, ALO, RIC, RAI, HUL, MAG, VER, BUT, KVY, GUT, MAS, PER, GRO, MAL, SUT, BOT, BIA, KOB, CHI, ERI. (The stewards decided no further action was required after reviewing the ALO/KVY incident.)

Just before the start of the race, the air temperature is 32°C; track 51°C; wind 3.3m/s; humidity 62%; it’s cloudy but dry, although the forecast is for rain during the race.

Tyre compound choices are hard (prime) and medium (option); the high track temperature will really test the tyres.
Looks like everyone will be starting on options

PER is in the pit garage – out of the car – looks like he won’t even start the race
HAM leads away on the formation lap

01/56: clean start
ROS up to P2 before Turn 1
RIC challenging VET; takes P3 from his teammate
MAG looks inside RAI but the Ferrari stays ahead
contact between BIA and MAL
BOT already up to P12

02: HAM, ROS, RIC, VET, ALO, HUL, RAI, MAG, BUT
HUL around the outside of ALO
MAG takes P8 from RAI
RAI visibly slow – radio from RAI says he’s got a puncture

03: RAI still hasn’t made it back to the pits yet
Pack is halfway round the lap before RAI pits

04: VET reclaims P3 from RIC
MAS all over MAG
Radio for HAM – ROS struggling with rear tyres so protect yours

05/56: HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAG, MAS
Incident involving cars 13 (MAL) and 17 (BIA) under investigation
Replay shows lots of damage to MAG’s front wing when RAI closes the door on him (lap 2) which immediately deflates RAI’s tyre

06: Incident involving cars (RAI) and (MAG) under investigation

07: 5-second stop-go penalty for car 17 (BIA) – causing a collision
Radio for BOT telling him not to attack teammate MAS; BOT says then tell MAS to pass MAG
Radio for MAL – box to retire the car

08: HAM fastest lap 1:47.048
MAG continues to hold off MAS
MAL pits; pushed into the garage

09: HAM leads teammate ROS by over 5secs

10/56: MAG pits – new nose after the incident with RAI
order is HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, BOT, KVY; retirements: BIA, MAL, PER
5-second stop-go penalty for car 20 (MAG) – causing a collision

11: KVY pits; rejoins P14

12: HAM’s lead now 6.3sec
ALO pits from P5; rejoins P9
GRO passes ALO at pit out but the Ferrari is the faster car – ALO reclaims P9

13: RIC pits from P4; rejoins alongside ALO; clean fight through Turn 1; RIC takes P7

14: VET pits from P3; front wing adjustment
BUT pits too
VET aggressively past BOT
Clumsy effort by ALO – makes it past BOT

15/56: ROS pits from P2; rejoins P3 in clear air
Radio for HAM – good on fuel, OK to push
order is HAM, HUL, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, BUT, KOB, MAS, KVY

16: HAM pits; good stop; HUL takes P1 just as HAM crosses the speed limit line
VET f/lap 1:46.334
HAM easily past HUL to reclaim P1 from the Force India

18: HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, KVY, BOT
Fuel usage stats show everyone around 30-31% with MAS and BOT using the least so far

19: RAI pits – first to switch to primes

20/56: HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, KVY, BOT; retirements: BIA, MAL, PER
VER pits; drives straight into the garage and retires

21: HAM’s lead 9.7secs over teammate ROS
Radio for ROS – increase the gap over VET and then can go to more savings

22: BBC interview PER – problem is software related, can’t downshift
Radio for HAM – look after the engine, turn it down a bit

23: ROS opening the gap to VET
Radio from HAM asking if he can do anything to conserve engine; engineer says no

24: RIC using the most fuel of the top 10; MAS and BOT the least

25/56: HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, BOT, MAG
MAS closing on BUT
MAG pits; serves 5-sec penalty in addition to regular stop (new rules)

26: SUT looking for a way round CHI
BUT pits

27: KVY passes KOB for P10

28/56 = half distance: ALO pits
MAS pits too
MAG f/lap 1:46.110

29: Fuel usage ranges from 45-50% for the top 10
RIC pits
MAG on the tail of KOB; uses DRS to take P11

30/56: HAM, ROS, VET, HUL, RIC, ALO, BOT, BUT, MAS, KVY
Radio for ROS – rain in the area, not imminent yet
BOT pits
GRO squeezes past KOB for P12 but KOB fights back

31: Radio for HAM – clouds forming away from the circuit; possible threat of rain towards end of race
KOB getting a little tail-happy on old tyres
GRO finally takes P12

32: VET pits – staying on options (makes sense – if it rains they don’t have to use both compounds)
Radio for HAM – going to stretch stint to protect against rain
BOT f/lap 1:45.475

33: ROS pits from P2; options; rejoins P3 behind HUL
Radio for HAM – box end of this lap

34: HAM pits; clean stop; rejoins still P1
VET f/lap 1:44.779
Radio from HUL – losing the rear (tyres)
SUT has stopped on track, on the exit of the final turn but off-line

35/56: HUL pits
HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, BOT, MAG
Radio from RAI – rain on the far side of the circuit
Marshals push SUT’s car off track

36: Radio for RIC – “hit the lift-off beeps”
Radio for HAM – rain on radar is very light

37: GUT pits, retires

38: BBC confirm it’s starting to rain in the pit lane
Radio for VET – rain in turns 9 and 10

39: RAI takes P13 from KOB
Looking very grey overhead

40/56: HAM, ROS, VET, RIC, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, BOT, MAG; GRO, KVY, RAI, KOB, ERI, CHI; DNF: GUT, SUT, VER, BIA, MAL, PER
BUT pits, followed by MAG

41: HAM’s lead 11secs; ROS almost 4secs ahead of VET
RIC pits; leaves the box but stops in the pit lane; mechanics have to push him back down the pit lane and into the box

42: RIC back in the box; problem is the front left; finally exits pits down in P14
Replay shows front jackman not happy as RIC pulls away
Incident involving car 3 (RIC) under investigation – unsafe release
HAM laps MAG in P9

43: ALO pits from P4
RIC has front wing damage – what happened?

44: RIC limping back to pits; very obvious cut in front right tyre
Replay shows RIC’s nose fail on the main straight and cut his tyre
RIC pits; new nose; rejoins P16 – he was P4 before his pit stop 3 laps ago

46: still overcast and a few spots of rain

47: MAS attacking BUT for P6; BUT stays ahead

48: HAM leads by 13.3secs
ALO f/lap 1:44.165

49: HAM extends his lead to 13.8s

50/56: HAM, ROS, VET, HUL, ALO, BUT, MAS, BOT, MAG, KVY; retirements: GUT, SUT, VER, BIA, MAL, PER
VET pits – primes – rejoins still P3

51: ROS pits; primes; still P2

52 = 5 laps left: HAM pits; last to take on primes; safely still P1
RAI attacking GRO
RIC in the pits again; retires
ALO closing on HUL for P4
HUL on 2-stop strategy so old tyres

53: Radio for MAS – BOT is faster than you, don’t hold him up
HUL and ALO battling for P4; good attempt at holding him off but ALO takes P4
BOT closing on teammate MAS for P7

54 = 3 laps left: HAM f/lap 1:43.066
Radio for MAS – telling him again not to hold up BOT

55/56: HAM, ROS, VET, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, BOT, MAG, KVY
Radio for HAM – you’re fastest, back off and save the car
MAS locks up as he tries to keep BOT behind

56/56 = final lap: MAS still fending off his teammate
Radio for HAM – final lap, take no risks
GRO holding off RAI, hanging on to P11

HAM takes the chequered flag
ROS over the line for a Mercedes 1-2, first time since 1955
GRO stays ahead of RAI
MAS still holding off BOT; hangs on to P7

Provisional result: HAM, ROS, VET, ALO, HUL, BUT, MAS, BOT, MAG (+1 lap), KVY, GRO, RAI, KOB, ERI, CHI
DNF: GUT, SUT, VER, BIA, MAL, PER

Podium interviews by Benedict Cumberbatch – good to hear someone string a real question together.

5 thoughts on “Malaysian Grand Prix – Race

  1. “Daniel Ricciardo has been handed a 10-place grid penalty for next weekend’s 2014 Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix following an unsafe release from his third pit stop in Sunday’s race in Malaysia.” [source: FIA]

  2. I forgot to update my GridBids picks for this race so the ones from Australia are carried over: ROS (P2), HAM (P1), ALO (P4), BUT (P6) & MAS (P7).

    “You scored 63 points for this race and have a total of 115 points this season. You ranked 78 for this race and 41 overall.”

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