So, the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix was run and won yesterday with
Mark Webber Sebastian Vettel taking the chequered. flag.
Yep, it was pretty much Mark Webber’s race, with Vettel under orders not to overtake Webber in the closing stages and not to challenge for the lead. Webber was leading and on his way to the win. The team technicians advised he needed to conserve fuel and tyres, so he “dialed his car back” meaning he changed fuel and power settings and wasn’t as aggressive into corners.
But, on the 46th lap (5-6 laps remaining) Vettel launched a huge attack on Webber, ignoring team orders and overtook Webber to essentially steal the win.
Contrast to the Mercedes team of Hamilton and Rosberg in 3rd and 4th. Hamilton was in pretty dire circumstances with fuel and needed to coast for the last 8-10 laps. Rosberg was behind and repeatedly asked to overtake Hamilton so he could challenge the Red Bulls. He was repeatedly denied and ordered to keep his distance which, to his credit, he did and allowed Hamilton to step up to take third place on the podium.
This lead to one of the most awkward podiums in history.
The interview after the race was equally painful. I thought Webber was going to punch Vettel in the throat at one point. It was painful to watch. Vettel did himself no favours in the team, and put pressure on an already strained relationship.
“You’ve got some explaining to do” – Christian Horner to Vettel via the team radio after crossing the finish line
“The team made their decision. Seb made his own decision and he will have protection as usual” – Webber at the post-race press conference.
“Hai guise! Bye Guise!” – Hamilton, now racing for Mercedes, to the McLaren pit crew after pulling into the wrong garage for fresh tyres.
We also managed a Malaysian Seafood Laksa, with mine being washed down with a celebratory Red Bull beverage.