10/04/11 - 09:00
Finished
Malaysian Grand Prix
LIVE
Sepang International Circuit • Race
avant-match

Race

Follow the Malaysian Grand Prix live with Eurosport. The race starts at 09:00 on 10 April 2011. Find race results, standings, stats, scores and track info. Keep up with the top F1 drivers and teams including Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Valteri Bottas (Mercedes) and Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing).
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Highlights 
 
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Thanks for joining today's live coverage! Next up, the Formula One bandwagon rolls on to China - can Vettel keep his perfect run going? Find out on Friday, when we'll have live commentary of the first two free practice sessions!

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Sebastian Vettel: "It was never easy... I'm very pleased. I love what I do, and I don't think I could be happier at this stage."

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A similarly downbeat Mark Webber: "You get killed on the long run with no KERS... It's touch to clear people who have got KERS... I was losing a lot of time behind Lewis, who was in trouble, that's just the way it was."

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A very downbeat Lewis Hamilton: "This is racing, I guess. I started second, and did everything I could to keep up... I was stuck behind Heidfeld... I was really squashed in turn one... My tyres were done at the end, you just have to take it on the chin and move forwards."

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The drivers drench themselves in champagne, as Heidfeld looks understandably thrilled to be up on the podium. It's the German's first podium since the 2009 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Vettel is all smiles once again as he leaps onto the podium for the German national anthem. It's a perfect start to the season for the world champion, who is already building an imposing lead in the drivers' championship.

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11-16 is Sutil, Rosberg, Buemi, Alguersuari, Kovalainen, and Glock, with Petrov, Liuzzi, d'Ambrosio, Trulli, Perez, Barichello, Karthikeyan, and Maldonaldo all failing to finish

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Massa takes fifth ahead of team-mate Alonso, and Hamilton finishes a miserable afternoon in seventh. Kobayashi finishes eighth, Schumacher picks up a couple of championship points in ninth, and Di Resta rounds off another impressive performance in the Force India with a 10th-placed finish

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Webber can't quite force his way into the top three, but that's a decent recovery from the Australian after a shocking start as he finishes fourth

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Button takes second, with Heidfeld holding on comfortably to complete the podium

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VETTEL WINS THE 2011 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX!

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Heidfeld has the KERS in third place, Webber hasn't! If the German can stay clean, he should get a podium finish here. Massa is fifth, Alonso sixth, Hamilton seventh, Kobayashi eighth, Schumacher ninth, and Di Resta 10th

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Vettel enters his final lap of the Grand Prix, still six seconds ahead of Button

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Petrov goes over a rain gulley at top speed AND HE FLIES OFF THE TRACK AND INTO A 150MPH MARKER! That's race over for the Russian, and the steering column came off in his hands!

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So it's Vettel, Button, and Heidfeld, with Webber lurking dangerously with four fewer laps in his tyres than the Renault

4 

Hamilton then runs wide at turn seven with Webber right behind him, and hands the Australian fourth place as a gift! Hamilton immediately pits, and comes back out behind Petrov! The Brit is sinking through the points like a stone...

4 

Heidfeld opens up his rear wing as he comes up behind Hamilton on the first straight, and he uses the DRS to take him! Heidfeld moves into third!

5 

Hamilton now 19 seconds adrift of Button, and he has looked so uncomfortable on those tyres. Heidfeld and Webber are on the charge, though, and will both fancy a podium position here!

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Button still 6.588 seconds behind Vettel, as Webber moves up to fifth place with a text-book overtake around the outside of Massa on turn one

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Petrov takes eighth place from Kobayashi, as Webber starts to ask some questions of Massa in sixth

7 

Hamilton is still third for McLaren, but he'll be looking over his shoulder a Heidfeld and Massa who are still scrapping away behind him

8 

Vettel still eight seconds clear of Button, as Webber puts in a 1:40.5

9 

Alonso will have to go in for a new nose, and Hamilton looks to have taken some damage to his floor too! Late drama here with less than 10 laps remaining

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Alonso charges closer to Hamilton AND THEY COME TOGETHER! Alonso completely misjudges the entry into the corner, and runs into the back of Hamilton. Both cars continue, but Alsono takes heavy damage to his front wing!

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D'Ambrosio is the sixth car out of this race, as Ferrari go on the radio to tell Alonso that his rear wing has failed. That will hamper the Ferrari's attempt to overtake Hamilton no end!

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Alonso is in Hamilton's slipstream out of turn one, but Hamilton fends him off. Alsono then tries to pass on turn four, but Hamilton holds the better line. A fierce battle is underway for third!

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Webber pits for a fourth time, and returns behind Heidfeld and Massa - who are scrapping away for seventh place

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Button nine seconds behind Vettel after the stops, as Red Bull tell their drivers not to expect any rain for the remainder of the race. Schumacher flies off the track under pressure from Kobayashi, who punishes him by nicking ahead for ninth

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Red Bull respond to Button's pace by bringing in Vettel for a tyre-change. He's back out on hard tyres, and Ferrari immediately bring in Alonso

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Button puts in a 1:41.388 to go 31 seconds off the lead! That's the fastest lap of the day

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Di Resta takes Rosberg for 11th place, with the German backing out of the battle of the Mercedes. McLaren tells Hamilton not to stop again - leaving him with 16 laps left on those tyres

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Button's stop goes much, much better than Hamilton's, and he gets back out just ahead of his fellow McLaren! Webber is all over the back of Hamilton now, who doesn't look comfortable on the new tyres

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Hamilton's pit doesn't go well at all - taking 6.9 seconds. Button is the next to pit, and he could end up in front of his team-mate!

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Webber sets the fastest lap - a 1:41.4. Hamilton goes back into the pits for his third stop, and a new set of hard tyres

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Vettel is back to his most comfortable now, moving up to 9.6 seconds clear of Hamilton

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Word from the pits is that Barrichello's retirement was a gearbox failure, and Perez's Sauber - retired after 24 laps - was after hitting some debris from Buemi's Toro Rosso

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Sutil takes Alguersuari for 14th place, and Kobayashi goes into the pit to move the Force India driver up to 13th!

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Vettel takes a second out the McLarens, and is starting to stretch the lead again. Hamilton is out there on hard tyres at the moment, with Button and Alonso both on softs in third and fourth place respectively

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Vettel puts in a 1:41.6 as Webber goes in for a third pit stop, and Petrov moves past Kobayashi into eighth with a very straight-forward DRS-assisted overtake on the straight

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Here's the order with 24 laps remaining: Vettel, Hamilton, Button, Alonso, Webber, Heidfeld, Massa, Kobayashi, Petrov, Di Resta, Schumacher, Alguersuari, Sutil, Buemi, Rosberg, Kovalainen, Trulli, Glock, d'Ambrosio, Liuzzi

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Hamilton takes another two tenths out of Vettel, who responds with his fastest lap of the Grand Prix so far. Button still third, over five seconds back

26' 

McLaren go on the radio to tell Hamilton and Button that Vettel doesn't have KERS, and they know they've got a real chance if they can get the Red Bull within touching distance! McLaren still confident they can win this one!

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That's two pit stops across the board, and Vettel still leads by just under four seconds

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Red Bull are telling Vettel not to use KERS, which explains why the Ferraris and McLarens are scything down the Red Bull's lead

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Kobayashi takes Schumacher for ninth place, and Button jumps ahead of Alonso after the Spaniard returns from the pits

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Alonso pits, and Vettel uses the DRS to pass Massa! Heidfeld pits too, which is brilliant news for the Red Bull team! Vettel's path back to the front suddenly looks a lot simpler. Hamilton, meanwhile, passes Petrov with a stunning overtake at turn five

30 

Vettel pits, putting Alonso back into the race lead. Red Bull's pit is superb, but the German looks sluggish as he returns on softs behind Massa

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Meanwhile, Hamilton pits and returns behind Petrov on hard tyres

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Barrichello's miserable race comes to an end, and his is the third car out retired. A real shame for the Brazilian, and for Williams who have lost both drivers today

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Red Bull and Vettel discuss his tyre situation, and the German seems calm despite his ever-diminshing lead

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Di Resta is on the soft tyre, and is putting in some snappy lap times in eighth position for Force India. The Scot leads Schumacher and Kobayashi, with Webber back in 11th

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Webber pits, and it does indeed look like he's on a four-stop race. He's got two new sets of prime tyres available, and will use five sets of tyres today!

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Hamilton takes another six tenths out of Vettel's lead! The McLaren is bearing down on the world champion - who is still 4.9 seconds clear - and the top six are all quicker than the German at the moment!

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Webber is told to stick to Plan A, which is likely to be four stops. Massa passes Webber with the KERS, and the Australian is in seventh place now

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Mark Webber looks to be generating too much understeer, as Alonso takes seven tenths off Hamilton

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Alonso is going very well now - down to 3.436 seconds behind Hamilton. He's just over nine seconds behind Vettel now, who can see Hamilton in his mirrors! It's getting tighter here!

 

Video: Hamilton and Button talking before the weekend's action.

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Hamilton puts in the fastest lap with 1:43.388, and shaves sixth-tenths of a second off Vettel's lead which is down to 5.574 seconds!

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Barrichello still propping up the 22 remaining drivers, behind Trulli, Liuzzi, d'Ambrosio, Glock, and Sutil

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Button seems to be struggling at the moment - Alonso has stormed ahead of the McLaren driver quite comfortably

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Karthikeyan is the second retirement of the day, and Buemi's Toro Rosso is being investigated for speeding in the pit lane

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Button leaves the door open up the inside, and Alonso goes past him! The Brit tries to bite back on the outside, but Alsonso defends!

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Petrov leads, before finally heading into the pits. Button moves clear of Alsonso, and the Petrov returns in 10th

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Trulli locks completely as he comes out of the pits, and immediately goes off! That's a pretty clear indication that there's some water out there at the moment

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That's a poor pit stop for Heidfeld too, who returns behind Button. Vettel looking untouchable early on

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Massa pits for Ferrari, but it's a terrible stop with a sticky wheel nut. He returns in 14th, as Heidfeld also pits

42 

Vettel nine seconds clear, and there's plenty of frustrated faces in the McLaren team as Heidfeld's slow pace might just have cost them a chance at stopping Vettel in this race. The German pits, as the rain starts to fall

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Hamilton pits for McLaren, and he just nips back out ahead of Alguersuari into some relatively clear air

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Di Resta pits for Force India, after a faily heavy lock-up. Button, Massa, and Alsonso are separated by just two seconds at the moment, as they battled for Button's fourth place

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Webber pits for softs, as McLaren tell Hamilton to preserve his tyres and stay out for as long as he can. Vettel, meanwhile, extends his lead over Heidfeld to over eight seconds

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Maldonaldo is the first retirement, after failing to return from the pits. It's sprinkling with rain now in Sepang. Button closes in on Hamilton, 2.4 seconds behind his McLaren team-mate in fourth place

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Vettel has complained of vibrations in his Red Bull, but is going well here. Hamilton getting plenty of use of the DRS at the moment, but he's too far back

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Maldonaldo enters the pits for Williams, as does Sutil for Force India

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Vettel leads Heidfeld by 5.2 seconds, with Hamilton third and Button fourth

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Positions five to 10: Massa, Alonso, Petrov, Schumacher, Kobayashi, Webber

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Kobayashi leaves an acre of space on the inside for Webber, who snaps him up for ninth place. The Red Bull driver is still carrying around the weight of that useless KERS system, however, and Kobayashi takes him on the next straight. This is going to be another frustrating race for Webber!

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Webber back in 10th now, as teams start to warn the drivers to expect rain within 10 minutes

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Petrov runs wide on turn 13 and finds himself under real pressure from Schumacher

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Barrichello gets a puncture on the final corner - slow lap on the way for the Williams driver

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DRS is now available on all cars

 
2011 GP Malaysia Vettel Red Bull
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Replays from Webber's cockpit show the Red Bull driver quite simply swamped at the start - watching a procession of cars storm past him with no KERS available

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Positions one to five: Vettel, Heidfeld, Hamilton, Button, Petrov

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Vettel with a two second lead over Heidfeld up top. Webber has sunk back to ninth after a terrible start

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Clean driving from the field, but a wild start nonetheless! Di Resta gets through the inside of Rosberg, but the Mercedes battles back immediately to reclaim 13th place

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Michael Schumacher makes a tremendous start in the Mercedes! The German is up to eighth, and Nick Heidfeld takes Hamilton for second at the first corner!

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GO GO GO IN KUALA LUMPUR!

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The formation lap is underway! Mark Webber has reportedly radioed in a problem to the engineers, to which the engineers responded "we can see it, but we can't do anything about it". More on that situation as it develops...

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A quick look at the front of the grid then. Vettel and Hamilton start on the front row, ahead of the Red Bull of Mark Webber and McLaren's Jenson Button. Alonso sits fifth in his Ferrari, with Nick Heidfeld's Renault sixth

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McLaren are pumping dry ice into Jenson Button's cockpit at the moment - in an attempt to keep things cool. Sebastian Vettel, meanwhile, looks typically focussed. We're moments away from the formation lap!

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It's a hazy day out there - much cooler than qualifying yesterday. I hate to say it, but it does look like rain might be on its way! That should suit the smaller teams at the back...

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Renault driver Vitaly Petrov: "Our car looks very strong - the race will be very, very interesting. We don't know what to expect from the weather, and we don't know what to expect from the tyres."

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Ferrari's Fernando Alonso endured another sluggish day yesterday, however, finishing almost a second off Vettel's pace. The Spaniard only managed a fourth-placed finish in the season-opener in Melbourne, and

08:30 

Good afternoon and welcome to our LIVE coverage of the Malaysian Grand Prix!