Malaysia GP: Vettel saves a troubled weekend!
Incredible drive from Sebastian Vettel as he climbs from last to P4! Kimi Räikkönen is unable to start because of engine problems.
The morning practice looked very positive, ending in a Ferrari 1 – 2. However Vettel was asked to stop the car and the team changed the engine before qualifying. Just a few minutes into Q1, it all went wrong again. There was a lot of movement in the box but Vettel did not manage to set a lap time, meaning he had to start from the back of the grid.
Kimi went on to Q3 without a problem and placed himself in P2, just 45 thousands behind Hamilton.
The drama for Scuderia Ferrari continues as Kimi reports a loss of power on his way to the grid, mechanics tried to fix the issue but he was pushed back to the box just before the start. One Ferrari in the box, one on the back of the grid. Things were not looking good.
The start was clean but exciting, Bottas had a great launch and passed Ricciardo, but was held off by Verstappen. Vandoorne found himself in a surprising P5, and Vettel already had P13 after lap 1!
Birthday boy Max Verstappen then pulled a daring pass on Lewis Hamilton for the lead and dominated the race from there. Sebastian continued to climb up the leaderboard while still taking care of his tyres, he was already under Bottas’ wing before the halfway point! After some wheel-to-wheel racing and a few spins down the field, Vettel attacked Ricciardo with a few laps to go but it didn’t work out in the end. 20 year old Max Verstappen victorious, Hamilton second and Ricciardo third. Seb takes a deserving “Driver of the day” and 12 points to limit the damage. There is one more thing though, on the cool down lap Stroll crashed into Vettel which could have damaged his gearbox, this is unknown at the time of writing. We will see at the Japanese Grand Prix next weekend.
After all, it was a good Grand Prix to watch! We will miss you, Malaysia.