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Vettel disobeys orders to win Malaysian GP ahead of Webber and Hamilton

Sebastian Vettel disobeyed team orders to win an eventful Formula 1 Malaysian Grand Prix today, finishing ahead of his visibly upset team mate Mark Webber and Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton. Vettel, who had been running behind Webber, was instructed by his Red Bull team to hold station but chose to pass his teammate in the final laps of the race.

Ferrari’s Felipe Massa finished fifth ahead of the Lotuses of Romain Grosjean and Kimi Raikkonen. Nico Hulkenberg, Sergio Perez and Jean-Eric Vergne rounded out the top ten. McLaren’s Jenson fell out of contention after his team failed to correctly secure his right front wheel after a pit stop.

During some dicy wheel-to-wheel moments, Vettel’s race engineer, Guillaume ‘Rocky’ Rocquelin, tried to warn the 3 time world champion to fall back, saying “Come on Sebastian, this is silly.” After the race, Rocky commented: “Good job, Seb. You obviously wanted it bad enough. Still there’ll be some explaining to do.”

Prior to the podium ceremony, Vettel tried to approach Vettel, but Webber was in no mood to chat, saying only “Multi-21, Seb. Multi-21,” referring to the team order that effectively should have meant the drivers hold their position. 

Sebastian Vettel later apologised for his driving.

Lewis Hamilton’s race finished in controversial circumstances when the Mercedes new boy was told to conserve fuel while racing ahead of his teammate Nico Rosberg. Rosberg, whose fuel issues weren’t quite as pronounced, demanded to be allowed to overtake Hamilton several times over the team radio, but was denied permission to do so by team principal Ross Brawn.

“I can go so much faster. Just let me drive past,” Rosberg was heard to say. Brawn replied:
“Negative. Negative, Nico… Lewis’ pace is what we’re asking him to do he can go a lot faster as well.”

“He’s too slow,” insisted Rosberg.

“Nico please drop back we have to look after the cars,” responded Brawn. There’s a massive gap behind and there’s nothing to gain in front. I want to bring these cars home, please.”

Rosberg later admitted holding station was the right thing to do, while Hamilton, gracious in finishing ahead of his teammate, told the media his podium should have belonged to his teammate.

More to follow.

Pos No Driver Team Grid Pts
1 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 1 25
2 2 Mark Webber Red Bull Racing-Renault 5 18
3 10 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 4 15
4 9 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 6 12
5 4 Felipe Massa Ferrari 2 10
6 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 11 8
7 7 Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 10 6
8 11 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 12 4
9 6 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 9 2
10 18 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Ferrari 17 1
11 17 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 18  
12 12 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 14  
13 22 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 19  
14 20 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 20  
15 21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 22  
16 23 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 21  
17 5 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 7  
18 19 Daniel Ricciardo STR-Ferrari 13  
Ret 16 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 16  
Ret 15 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 8  
Ret 14 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 15  
Ret 3 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 3

Image: Flickr

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