In Malaysia, when it rains, it pours…at least on Sundays. It at least livened up the happenings which meant Ferrari scored an unlikely win with Fernando Alonso finishing first ahead of the fast-charging and mightily impressive Sauber (yes, a Sauber) of Sergio Perez in second. McLaren pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton had to be content with another 3rd place finish.
Red Bull’s Mark Webber finished fourth with Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen fifth, Williams’ Bruno Senna sixth and Force India’s Paul Di Resta seventh. Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne finished eight ahead of the second Force India of Nico Hulkenberg in ninth. Mercedes’ Michael Schumacher picked the last point in tenth place.
The result was in much due to the changeable weather conditions at Sepang as it was due to the teams’ strategies, driver errors, backmarker blues and tyre wear in equal measures. It was drizzling at the start but not enough to warrant a Safety Car start and both McLarens had a good start and were steadily pulling away at the head of the pack. Michael Schumacher and Romain Grosjean were involved in a coming together which saw the Mercedes card drop down the order and a few laps later, Grosjean spun into the gravel trap and into retirement.
Whilst the HRT team started on full wets, most of the others were on intermediate tyres. Sergio Perez & Bruno Senna changed to full wets at the end of the first lap and by lap six, all of the field was on full wets as the rain increased in intensity. The Safety Car was deployed on lap seven and after a couple of laps, it was decided to red flag the race as the rain was continuing and it was deemed unsafe to race around any more. Order was Hamilton & Button at the head, with Perez, Webber, Alonso, Vettel, Vergne, Massa, Rosberg & Karthikeyan in the top ten.