Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Sepang, 2011

Rate the race: 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix

Debates and pollsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

What did you think of the Malaysian Grand Prix? Rate the race out of ten and leave a comment below:

Rate the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix out of ten

  • 1 (1%)
  • 2 (1%)
  • 3 (1%)
  • 4 (1%)
  • 5 (3%)
  • 6 (6%)
  • 7 (17%)
  • 8 (40%)
  • 9 (24%)
  • 10 (6%)

Total Voters: 556

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1 = ‘Terrible’, 10 = ‘Perfect’

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2011 Malaysian Grand Prix

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175 comments on “Rate the race: 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix”

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  1. 8/10. Rather exciting race with tonnes of battles going on everywhere and Vettel’s lead constantly under threat. Shame no one properly challenged him for it though.

    Is it just me or did the glitch in Alonso’s DRS lead to more exciting racing? If it worked he would’ve easily passed Hamilton and we wouldn’t have seen that amazing battle between the two of them. I thought DRS was brought in to make racing more exciting but it’s gone the opposite way in that instance.

    Speaking of Hamilton, just what happened to him? He was doing alright for the first half but when those hard tyres came on during that dreadful pitstop he couldn’t keep up with Button, almost got taken out by Alonso and then lost out to Heidfeld and Webber. Was his car damaged after Alonso’s collision? Massively disappointing race for him. At least Button got on the podium.

    Despite his very poor start, Webber was easily the driver of the day. Massive shame he couldn’t get onto the podium right at the end though. Button was the second best driver of the day.

    Vettel’s extremely quick but he has it too easy. I want to see him start in the midfield and see if he has overtaking abilities.

    Glad to see Massa beat Alonso too!

    1. agree with this – it was a good race but we haven’t seen a good battle for first place.

      DRS was good in this race, although it did seem completely unfair on Webber at the beginning. Really good recovery drive by him

      1. and a great start/race by Heidfeld I forgot to mention

      2. Actually I put in a 9/10. Pretty much agree on the rest.

        I think DRS was a tad too powerfull here, it was better in Melbourne where it just enabled them to keep close. Webbers also looked like it was stuck after running Heidfeld close.

        1. Also far to many replays showing nothing special after lap 2, instead of cars fighting on track.

          1. yes i tweeted this. why show replays of the start as soon as the DRS is activated?

            The coverage wasn’t great either – we kept seeing pitstops instead of overtakes

          2. I agree.. the coverage of this race was terrible. For us star sports viewers in Asia, the commercial breaks were timed just when the drivers were chasing each other down the DRS zone. Terrible coverage of a really exciting race..

            I rated the race 8/10 btw

          3. Meh, I think the coverage was very good, I think you have to take for granted that, it being live, you may not see everything. Also, I consider that maybe some people like seeing the replays… I did.

          4. I think the FOM coverage was reasonable. The FOM has to make a decision whether to cover a pit stop, or a potential pass. Given that pit stops are such a critical, and often race changing part of the race, I think they made good decisions by covering the leaders pit stops. It’s not like they covered every pit stop. I don’t remember seeing any Lotus, HRT, or Virgin pit stops, they only seem to cover the ones that might have an effect on the race.

            If you want to see some truly terrible coverage of F1, come out and watch a race on Australian TV. Here we only get to see qualifying and the race, and depending on which city or region you live in, qualifying might be delayed. In the race itself, One HD the station that shows the race will have I would say at least 10, 3 to 4 minute ad breaks during the race, and usually time them so that you miss something exciting that happened. They’ll usually cut from the BBC commentary, and say something like “looks like pit stops are about to start, so we will go to break”, and when they come back, pit stops are finished, or they’ll say “looks like it’s about to rain, lets go to break”, or “looks like so and so is going to pass so and so, good time for break”. Also yesterday, coming back from breaks, they managed to show replays out of order, which were totally confusing. Why they can’t find a better way to show the ads, is beyond me. Well, my theory is because they don’t really care about the viewers experience.

            Anyone who has access to the BBC feed doesn’t know just how good they have it compared to the rest of the world.

          5. Re: Aussie TV. A few years ago in the UK we had ITV doing the television coverage. That had ads in. So we Brits do understand what you’re going through :(
            We are very lucky with the BBC coverage. Especially because they shove other programs onto other BBC channels for it. Honestly, F1 is the only reason I pay for a TV license.

        2. The DRS was interesting. Sometimes the effect was really pronounced and other times it wasn’t. I found this to be an entertaining race, You really didn’t know who was going to finish where until the last couple of laps.

      3. It was KERS problems that affected Webber at the start of the race and dropped him down the field not DRS.

    2. Vettel on course to usurp Hamilton’s tally of victories this season, could worsen the Ham-McLaren relationship.

      1. I wonder what the secret to Lotus’s great start was? Reminds me of 2006. That traction off the line was just amazing.

        Alonso’s DRS glitch was a bit unlucky. If it was working he wouldnt have had to take such measures just to get passed Lewis. You can blame the DRS for being too easy, but its the same for everyone (as long as everyones is working ;))

        1. I reckon it’d the exhaust blown diffuser (EBD). Renault previously said their fuel efficiency allows them to carry around 10% more fuel if required, and my guess is that Renault are using some of this at key moments of the race for the EBD, similar to RBR in qualifying.

          They also have set-up for higher top-speeds looking at the speed trap, which with KERS + start straight, helped them get the jump. This set-up combined with the above method of dynamically adding downforce, could be quite an advantage for passing/keeping cars behind.

          1. yes, i’ve heard that Renault’s traction in the low speed corners is fantastic so this will obviously be a factor in the starts.

        2. The start was impressive and the speed at the exit of some corners was great. That Renault was very fast at the exit of turn 14 which I feel is key to Nick staying in front of Webber. Nick had a good day today, so did Petrov until he went for a joyride. I hope his back is ok.

      2. Well it already worsend the Ham-Vettel relationship (at least that’s what I understood from Lewis’ latest comments).
        9/10 for this race. Glad to see Kobayashi taking points again. You can barely say that Alonso was beaten by Massa, the guy was fighting for a podium without DRS, while Massa was in his usual place.

        1. Yeah well considering Alonso was right behind Massa by the end, you could say Alonso was a whole pitstop (25 seconds around about) faster on the same strategy.

        2. it’s hard to say when Massa only ended up behind Alonso after a terrible pit stop

          1. Massa’s pit stop was Ferrari’s way of making sure Alonso moves up on him in the race.

          2. @dev. you are so wrong

          3. Team orders are allowed, so there’s no need for “fake” pitstop mistakes.

        3. Who crossed the line first???

        4. Massa was ahead of Alonso and Webber before his team lost him time in the pits.

    3. Well..2 GP’s in and guess what..F1 is still rubbish, the racing is even more boring as it now comes down to gimicks, and pit stop & tyre lottery.
      wondering who will pit, who’s KER’s or DRS will or wont work makes a joke of the sport, wont watch anyomre of this season utter crap, far better racing in touring car and NASCAR. Nice one Berine, you failed again.

      1. You can’t please all of the people all of the time. I think you’re in a minority.

      2. Really you prefer NASCAR to F1? It makes me dizzy! But it takes all sorts I guess, but the audience figures put you in a minority.

      3. hahaha, then why do you even lose time coming to a F1 website and commenting on it? I bet we’ll see more comments by “Expat64” next week ;)

        1. pretty sure expat64 would love f1 if everyone was crashing into each other.

      4. I’m guessing he has trouble following all the different things in F1

      5. What is NASCAR?

        Just kidding ;) All the things you have listed are some of the reasons why I love F1 ;)

      6. F1 is still rubbish

        If you think that, then just go away please.

      7. Obviously not your sport, you’d be better sticking to what you like best, touring car/nascar, that way we who like F1 don’t have to read your drivel. Bye Bye Exprat64.

      8. Its hard to say expat64 seriously when he calls NASCAR a form of racing.

      9. if turning left isn’t dull, don’t know what is!

      10. @ Expat

        Don’t waste my time with your uppity negativity. The race was interesting!

    4. 8/10 and glad to see massa beat alonzo even with a srewed pitstop
      but the bbc tv coverage was terrible

      i mean filming a pitstop while an overtake was going on. hardly any onboard shots and i don’t recall the camera picking up a lotus, virgin or hispania. When there was a yellow flag the commentators had no idea that a hispania had retired. F.O.M really have to get the onboard coverage up to scratch. on freeview driver tracker again! we want f1 onboard

      The forum was just as bad because they just cock about and don’t analys the race. they only talk about mclaren and red bull and at the end a quick mention for ferrari. They didnt go through any of the overtakes bar the start and the hamilton alonzo incident. hardly any interviews just the brits.

      1. bbc’s coverage was and is better than itv’s. Plus, it’s FOM who provide the race feed. And, at least there actually is an f1 forum

        1. is better than itv’s will ever be

      2. Felipe Massa is back!

        1. He was less far back this race though …

          1. He was every bit as quick as Fernando during the whole weekend (bar Q3).

        2. A wet race should cure your enthusiasm.

      3. its not the BBC, they commentate on the live pictures provided by FOM – all the TV partners get the same feed. Not up to them. I actually thought the BBC was pretty good, damn nice not to have leggard in the commentary box!

  2. SennaNmbr1 (@)
    10th April 2011, 10:46

    9/10. Loses a point for no battle for first place. Otherwise, just what we want to see!

    1. I’d say 8 out of 10. I’d have given it a 9 if someone caught Vettel and a battle for the lead came about.

      1. In the end I gave 9/10 as Lewis got really close to make Vettel sweat, guess thats the best we were going to get.

        Shame Button did not get close enough after that, or the team was afraid to let him.

        With some 30 laps in it was so much action it was hard to know where to look. Still FOM missed quite a bit of action I guess.

        1. Still FOM missed quite a bit of action I guess.

          Wouldn’t be FOM if they didn’t. :P

          1. Sadly so. Those lame replays of just about everyone after lap 2 were pretty bad as well. Instead of showing the action on track.

          2. The replays were great a analysis of the start from each drivers’ perspective.

            Just so completely at the wrong time!

  3. Tires are a joke, thanks for nothing Pirelli.

    1. it’s just what they were asked for…

      1. It does demonstrate how a driver works with or to an extent against his car. Webber was trading FLAP with driver’s who were able to run one stop less than him.
        It leads me to think that in prior years he wasn’t so much unlucky but rather ‘hard’ on the car, resulting in multiple failures.
        I’m enjoying watching this element of the race this year.

        1. err he was so hard on his car last year he didnt have a single mechanical DNF, while Vet had 3. Web was trading FLAP’s with cars that had an extra .3 sec per lap with a touch of a button… he finish 26secs behind the leader having completed an extra stop, being completely swamped to the first corner…again KERS related (so unless Web had a particularly hard formation lap, i don’t see how that failure can be hi fault? )

          1. Very fair call re last year; I’m just concerned that on the Pirelli’s he’s needed an extra stop compared to Vettel. Hopefully it was just the KERS & traffic that was the difference this race, doesn’t excuse Melbourne though.

          2. Rear suspension issue was the reason for Melbourne’s dissapointment…though having had two disasterous GP’s to start the year with he is still only 4 points from 2nd in the WDC.

    2. boris the one-eyed gerbil
      10th April 2011, 11:04

      Tyres are brilliant, with different strategies working – Webber has a shocking start, does a 4-stopper and charges through the field (repeatedly) and Kobayashi does a 2-stopper and finishes very well :)

      Much better than last year’s battle to be first to pit and then keep that position to the end of the race :(

    3. The tyres are excellent – different drivers in different cars are throwing up different results. Hamilton being forced to pit late on is the perfect example of the unpredictability Pirelli have delivered.

    4. I’m not passing judgement yet. I think that you should give them a few rounds to see how everything turns out. Lots of people found this race entertaining. I found it both entertaining and confusing in that I didn’t really know who was where on the track. Its one of the few times I have been somewhat mystified and happy at the same time.

  4. 7. Great start with the Renaults and exciting racing. Got kinda bored after the halfway mark, but the last 10 laps made up for that. Well done Heidfeld!

  5. Objectively, a race with pretty good action. But with all the hype before it, I can’t help feel disappointed how predictable it was at the front.

    1. Thats what made it an eight in my book, you can hardly blame Vettel, but I reckon Heidfeld rather interfered with our chance to see Hamilton actually preassure Vettel for the first half of the race, after which he may have fallen away anyway.

      McLaren made some baffling decisions with Hamiltons strategy, didn’t he have the same number of soft tyres as Vettel and Button, why did he do two stints on the prime? They made life a lot harder for themselves it seems.

      This was a great race for on track action, but not really for intrigue, that might be a problem of the multi stop pirelli’s.

      I still give it an 8 on my own enjoyment at the time, great drives overtakes etc. But it won’t live long in the memory.

      1. Totally with you Scribe on the baffling strategy for Hamilton. Although initially I was guessing they were trying to jump Vettel during the stops. It almost seemed to play out that way when Vettel ended up behind I think Button and Massa.
        But and it’s a big but, Vettel was just too good to be slowed down and got the passing done by the next lap.

        Who says he has no racecraft?

        On this occasion I think Lewis could have been more aggressive in the first stint, attacking Heidfeld. He certainly didn’t benefit from tyre preservation if that’s what was going on…

  6. Great race, rubbish result, 8.

    1. Rate the race, not the result.

      1. I think 8 is about fair for this race, it could’ve been better.

          1. How? A battle for the lead, rain, more incidents similar to Petrov’s aerial moment, more battles similar to Alonso vs Hamilton…

          2. A wet race half way through would’ve been interesting. We should get that next week though.

          3. @Alex Bkk. Well, although there was plenty of action for the lead, the result was fairly nailed on.

            The battles were lots of fun but nothing really spectacular. The race was tense but not like say China last year when it was all crazy, that got a 9, or Canada were everything was in doubt for the whole race, which got a 10.

            Great, but not spectacular, a very solid 8, but not a race that’ll be remembered for a long time so instead of 9 or 10 which I reserve for true spectaculars, it gets an 8.

            If Hamilton/Button/Webber/Alonso had been in a position to make Vettel scrap for his win rather than coast as per usual, I’d have enjoyed this more.

          4. *battles for position* None for the lead.

          5. Well, I think that no one was really gonna touch Vettel going into this race… I just followed the ermmm… lower elements.

        1. I agree, a battle for the lead really makes a race that much more exciting. It can make an otherwise 6 an 8 and a lack of it can make an 8 a 6

          1. I thought it better because of the tyres. Ham pitted took on primes and the rest of the field went on options. It looked like he had it in the bag, except the primes didn’t last.

            KERS is working, or it’s not working. Flippy Floopy wing is working or it’s not working.

            I guess it’s true in retrospect that Vettel was never really challenged. But we never really knew that. What we did saw a lot of racing thorough out the grid.

            It’s not just the no.1 spot on the podium that makes a great race.

  7. that was fantastic. the last 15 laps or so were fantastic. with webber fighting his way up, almost getting a podium. riveting race. finally, a vettel win that wasnt boring!

    1. actually it was a typical boring vettel win, but it was webber and all the action behind that made the race exciting!

      1. It was a great win by Vettel, he managed the situation perfectly – there was pace when he needed it. He was dominant but far from dull.

  8. 6/10

    Overtakes and minor events can’t make up for the fact that if Vettel is on pole and is in front at the first corner then the race on the whole will be a snooze.

    If the lead is never under threat (and let’s face facts it NEVER was) then really we’re just picking for scraps in trying to find excitement lower down the field.

    1. My thoughts exactly!

    2. Blame all others who simply can’t match Vettel’s pace

      1. True, especially the Aussie who lost 7 places on lap 1, outdoing the 5 he lost at Valencia, Monza and Spa last year.

        1. That was because of Webber not having KERS, nothing to do with his actual pace.

          1. It did have to do with his actual start though. KERS isn’t usable until about 3rd gear. Webber was slipping down the field immediately.

            He said himself that it was a bad start, KERS or no KERS.

  9. 9/10 – Lots of good battles, plenty of overtakes, a few spectacular performances. The threat of rain is often just as entertaining as proper rain.

  10. I haven’t seen it, I was only reading the live blog and watching live timing so I will not rate it at this point..but based on what I’ve read, I would give it a 8/10 because the action seemed a bit too reliant on tyres, KERS and DRS (or on Kers and DRS failing to work)

  11. If we needed a race to prove that Button handles his tyres better than Hamilton, this was it

    1. How? Hamilton used old tyres in the final stint, maybe final 2, because of flat spotting them in practice. It had nothing to do with looking after them during the race.

      1. I think you would agree that Button managed his tyre allocation better over the whole weekend.

    2. I dont think it’s so cut-and-dry. I think the bad, bad pitstop before Hammy’s second stint really hurt his race. It is still a myth that Button conserves his tyres better than Lewis.

      1. Ham went out on primes early… I’d say bad stratgey

        1. I didn’t get that at all, he must have burned an extra pair of softs, completley baffling decision otherwise an prevented him from ever really challenging Vettel.

        2. it was 1 lap earlier and button went longer on them and was still managing decent times

  12. Well for the borefest Vettel’s win was Webber made up for it with his drive up to 4th, was hoping he would get the podium but still a great drive.

  13. 10/10 – I don’t remember a single lap of the race where something wasn’t happening, be it a pit-stop, overtake or a close battle.

    Hamilton vs Alonso finished and it cut straight to Massa vs Webber then it was back to Heidfeld vs Hamilton then back to Webber vs Heidfeld.

    Absolutely amazing race. Loved all of it.

    1. Correct. Only downside is they were in commercial break during the Hamilton Alonso incident. But still a solid 10.

      1. Thats for you, I had non-stop coverage,as I think most people did.

    2. I have sympathy with giving it a 10, but I’m reserving 10s for races like Brazil 08 or when there’s an epic closing stages battle for the lead

  14. Good race, enjoyed it. Shame Heidfeld held up the Mclarens for the first stint, helped take pressure of Vettel again.

    Im looking forward the Mclaren explanation for Hamiltons tactics…I couldnt see the up side of hard then hard again at that stage of the race!?

  15. 7/10 some great battles especially webber/kobayashi then webber/massa and webber /heidfeld. Love the way Kobayashi drives , its like watching him in a kart race. Webber driver of the day, if you said he was gonna miss a podium by 1 sec after lap one, people would have called you crazy. People seem to be saying bad things about the Pirelli’s-THEY WERE TOLD TO MAKE A TYRE THAT DEGRADES QUICKLY..

  16. I think the race would be better if each team had a team song that was played for the winner, rather than national anthems.

  17. Fantastic race with a significant number of on-track battles, varying strategies, mechanical failures, butchered pit stops and off-track excursions.
    Interesting to note with Webber’s KERS failure that is was the KERS assisted passes that looked artificial. Using DRS alone, it took more than a few corners to make the pass stick. That said it could just be the circuit or the leading drive using KERS defensively causing this.
    Petrov’s airborne effort would make an amazing picture! I hope someone grabs a hi-res screen
    Couldn’t have asked for more from that race, and really good to see Quick Nick on the podium, even at the expense of Webber. Vettel’s dominance will get tiresome though.

  18. ????!!!!

  19. I was a fan of DRS, but it looks like it’s starting to ruin races more than it’s helping. It’s just too easy to overtake with DRS. They simply fly past and usually even get in front well ahead of the braking point.

    The tyres are a nightmare too. Way too much tyre conservation going on and then a bit og lottery due to failed pitstops. Hamilton, Alonso, Heidfeld lost out big due to trouble in their stops.

    1. Not really a fan of DRS or KERS, but they aren’t going to give up down force in F1, and that is fairly obvious.

      It’s the only way to overtake, until that issue is resolved.

      The tyres, I love that bit

  20. This was yet another bizarre strategy decision from McLaren that hampered Lewis and gave Jensen the jump on him.

    Why stop for a 3rd tyre when you’re not losing speed, with your team mate given the softer tyres first, not to mention the messy stop for Lewis!?

    Disgraceful by McLaren, as its lear what they’re trying to do…

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