Sepang International Circuit, Sepang, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Sunday 29 March 2015. Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, 1st Position, celebrates on the podium. World Copyright: Alastair Staley/LAT Photographic. ref: Digital Image _79P9421
F errari have stepped up their game from last year, with Vettel first in the Championship.
O nly Palmer and Ericsson have no points so far this season, come on lads, get it together.
R aikkonen has said bwoah… a lot. Classsic Kimi!
M ax Verstappen must have stood on a black cat or walked under a ladder.
U nderwhelming so far from Williams, just 41 points.
L ewis Hamilton equalled the record number of pole’s previously held by Ayrton Senna.
A lonso, somehow secured the fastest lap at the Hungarian GP, and then sunbathed…
1 can be world champion, but who will it be?
It was a sea of red and white on the podium as Ferrari and Mercedes dominated in the desert. Vettel topped Hamilton and Bottas in a thrilling race with six retirements, most notably Max Verstappen. It was another double retirement for McLaren, with Alonso’s race grinding to a halt two laps from the end. It was another good double points finish, who are looking like the strongest of the midfield teams. Overall, this was probably the most exciting race of the season so far, and hopefully the drivers can keep up the excitement in Russia next month. Until next time!
Vettel won the head to head against Hamilton in this one, thanks to some great tactics from Ferrari. Bottas got on the podium in his inaugural race in the silver arrow, while Raikkonen made up the top 4. Riccardo retired early, engine problems hampering his home race. There were double points finishes for midfield pair Toro Rosso and Force India, with Verstappen and Massa also in the top ten. McLaren continued to disappoint, with Alonso not even finishing the race after a good start. Emergency debutant for Sauber Antonio Giovinazzi gave a fantastic account of himself, finishing 12th. On to China!
AUSTRALIAN GP: FULL RESULTS AND STANDINGS
1. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) Ferrari 1:24:11.670
2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes +00:09.975
3. Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Mercedes 00:11.250
4. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Ferrari 00:22.393
5. Max Verstappen (Holland) Red Bull 00:28.827
6. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Williams 01:23.386
7. Sergio Perez (Mexico) Force India 1 lap
8. Carlos Sainz Jr (Spain) Toro Rosso 1 lap
9. Daniil Kvyat (Russia) Toro Rosso 1 lap
10. Esteban Ocon (France) Force India 1 lap
11. Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Renault 1 lap
12. Antonio Giovinazzi (Italy) Sauber 2 laps
13. Stoffel Vandoorne (Belgium) McLaren 2 laps
Fastest Lap: Kimi Raikkonen,1:26.538, lap 56.
1. Ferrari 37
2. Mercedes 33
3. Red Bull 10
4. Williams 8
5. Force India 7
6. Toro Rosso 6
7. Renault 0
8. Sauber 0
9. McLaren 0
10. Haas 0
First practice in Australia certainly had plenty of talking points. It was three time world champion Lewis Hamilton who set the pace, finishing fastest in both sessions. It was a case of two differing sessions from Ferrari, as they were beaten by Red Bull in the first test, before Vettel finished just behind Hamilton in the second. There was a number of incidents, with Palmer ditching his car into the wall at turn 16, while Verstappen had a trip into the gravel. The midfield battle looks interesting, with lots of cars performing differently throughout the day. On to FP3 and qualifying!
This will be the first time we see the true potential of the cars, so it is hugely important ahead of qualifying and the race itself. The main question is: which teams have been sandbagging in testing? Can Red Bull actually go much faster then they’ve showed. Who is truly faster out of Ferrari and Mercedes? Which team in a packed midfield is going to show the most potential to lift themselves above the rest? And can McLaren finally rid themselves of their Honda-induced problems and perform as they should be expected to. It’s only practice, but I can’t wait!
It was a strange day in Barcelona on Thursday as there were some surprises on the timing board as well as the usual disappointments. Sebastian Vettel went through lightspeed to finish top of the leaderboard in 1:19 with Hamilton running him a close second in the Mercedes. There were plenty of good performances from smaller teams as Force India, Toro Rosso and Haas finished in 3rd, 4th and 5th respectively. It was another frustrating day for McLaren, as engine troubles led to disjointed running. It’s all to play for on the final day of testing, then it’s on to Australia!
Day 6 was all about the Finnish. It was the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas who topped the table, as Kimi Raikkonen had a day to forget in his Ferrari. Bottas set the quickest time, while his fellow countryman crashed on turn 3, ending his day prematurely. It was a disappointing day for Red Bull, who had engine issues, while McLaren continued to struggle, with Fernando Alonso only 12th fastest out of 14 drivers. Compared to last week, rookie Lance Stroll had a good day in the Williams, the teenager going fifth fastest ahead of world champion Lewis Hamilton. Lets see what Thursday holds!
1 Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes 1:19.310 **
2 Felipe Massa (Brz) Williams 1:19.420 ***
3 Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 1:20.406 *
4 Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 1:20.432 *
5 Lance Stroll (Can) Williams 1:20.579 **
6 Lewis Hamilton (GB) Mercedes 1:20.702 *
7 Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault 1:21.213 **
8 Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India 1:21.297 **
9 Carlos Sainz (Spa) Toro Rosso 1:21.872 *
10 Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas 1:21.887 ***
11 Pascal Wehrlein (Ger) Sauber 1:23.000 *
12 Fernando Alonso (Spa) McLaren 1:23.041 *
13 Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Sauber 1:23.384 *
14 Jolyon Palmer (GB) Renault 1:26.462 **
* = time set on soft tyre; ** = super-soft tyre; *** = ultra-soft tyre. Others medium