Hamilton Leads Mercedes 1-2 Finish In Malaysia

SEPANG, Malaysia- After capturing two consecutive pole positions, Lewis Hamilton finally received a good result by taking the Petronas Grand Prix of Malaysia Sunday afternoon, winning the race from start to finish by just over 17 seconds ahead of teammate Nico Rosberg. Sebastian Vettel, following a dismal first race finished in third, his first podium of the season.

“I’m incredibly happy today.” Claimed Hamilton afterwards. “This is my first win in Malaysia after eight attempts and to do it for our Petronas family in their home country makes it even more special. Anything can happen as we saw in Australia, so this is an important result for us. One-two finishes don’t happen very often and this is a real achievement for the team.”
Hamilton achieved everything right from the start, when he darted out in front of Rosberg and Vettel, taking the lead right from the beginning. However, one driver who thought he could get out onto the track was Sergio Perez, who started from the pit lane and then had a failure which put him out of the race without even starting.

Right even before the end of the first lap, the back of the grid encountered problems, as Jules Bianchi struck Pastor Maldonado, spinning the Lotus driver around. And with this incident, race officials gave Bianchi a ten second penalty for what many thought was a foolish move. Another incident on the first lap involved Kevin Magnussen and Kimi Raikkonen , as the latter touched the Ferrari driver’s rear right side, taking off part of the wing and flattening the Finn’s tire which forced him to return back to the pits, running his chance for some valuable points. Magnussen, like Bianchi before him, also was forced with a ten second penalty.

Hamilton continued on by increasing the gap between himself and Rosberg, to four seconds on lap four, to 5.4 on lap 11, to nine seconds by lap 21.

Daniel Riccardo, who had his Infiniti/ Red Bull entry in fifth place by lap 41, had to come in for a pit stop, only to have the front left tire improperly fitted when he left, causing his pit crew to run out and back the car up into his pit stall and refit the tire. However, the aggressiveness of the front jack man broke the front wing and with this, the steering became impossible, enabling the Australian to retire from the race four laps from the finish.

But for Hamilton, it was his 23rd victory of his career and his first victory for the Mercedes team since last July in Hungary. Fernando Alonso finished his second consecutive race in fourth place, while Nico Hulkenberg, who had been out in front of the Spaniard, finished fifth. Jenson Button took sixth, just ahead of the Williams pair of Felipe Massa and Valterri Bottas, while Magnussen and Russian rookie Dani Kvyat, who only in his second race placed in the points, rounded out the top ten finishers.

But Hamilton and especially Rosberg, who now leads in the World Championship Points, have made history by having Mercedes finish 1-2 in a formula one race since the mid 1950’s. However, for what has happened in Malaysia in the last three weeks, Hamilton finished up by not forgetting one thing.

Finally, I would like to offer this victory in tribute to all those affected by the tragedy of MH370.” He concluded.

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