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 F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG

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PostSubject: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:04 am

2013 FORMULA 1 PETRONAS MALAYSIA GRAND PRIX

Formula 1 is a fast moving sport, and just a week after the season opener, the F1 circus moves to the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia for the 2013 Formula 1 Petronas Malaysian Grand Prix. The Kuala Lumpur-based circuit 2012 marks the second round on the 2013 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.





Following a deal between Formula One Management and the Malaysian government in 1997, it was announced that a brand new circuit would be built and the first ever Malaysian F1 Grand Prix in 1999. Malaysia debuted on the Formula 1 World Championship Calendar in 1999, on the Sepang International Circuit which cost the government approximately $200 million to build. The circuit is located in Kuala Lumpur – Malaysia’s largest city. Malaysia has been on the schedule for a lot longer than other emerging nations, allowing awareness of F1 to develop – hence the healthy crowds that turn up.

Drivers love the Sepang track; it’s fast, flowing corners show the incredible cornering speeds and changes of direction that Formula 1 cars are capable of. The circuit is a true balance of everything; fast corners, tight corners, medium speed corners and long straights. This makes the Sepang track one of the more interesting modern tracks, and with high speed corners that are genuinely interesting to watch the cars go through.

After strange conditions in Australia with rain, a ‘green’ track and heavy graining; will Malaysia show us the true pecking order of Formula 1 in 2013, or will adverse weather conditions continue?

Sepang International Circuit fast facts

-Driving direction: Clockwise
-Length of pit straight: 0.56 mile
-Average speed of lap: 127 mph
-Longest period at full throttle: 830 metres (12 seconds)
-Full throttle percentage: 70 %
-Time on brakes: 14 %
-Gear changes per lap: 60
-Highest g-force: 4.0 g
--Total race distance: 192 miles

Fast facts about the Malaysian GP weekend

Due to the sweltering heat that always greets teams when they come to Malaysia each year, they will all consume the following:

-4000 bottles of water will be drunk over the weekend by each team – double the amount of bottles drunk at a European round of the championship
-Over 1000 energy drinks will be consumed by team
-1000 cans of soft drink will be drunk

Overtaking opportunities

This Sepang track has seen a lot of overtaking since 1999, the long straights and wide track encourage passing.

Turn 1 is a brilliant overtaking opportunity, the drivers exit the final turn very slowly, then build up to 190 mph along the pit straight then brake to just 45 mph for turn 1. This is a heavy braking zone, which always helps for overtaking prospects if drivers have more scope to out-brake each other. But, the braking zone into turn 1 is wide, so an opponent can quite easily get alongside another car and try and pass into this turn.

Also, turn 1 is a very wide corner itself, but it tightens up as drivers negotiate the turn. This has meant that numerous drivers have overshot turn 1, because it is such a wide turn – giving them a false sense of security – and therefore resulting in passing. Turn 2 follows on from turn 1, if a driver is alongside another car on the outside of turn 1, he may be able to have the authoritative position by having the inside line for turn 2, a downhill left hand bend that is just as tight as turn 1.

Like in Melbourne, turn 1 is a particularly important overtaking opportunity because the pit straight before turn 1 is where the DRS can be activated. This will put drivers in an excellent position to out-brake their opponents into turn 1 with the extra speed from the adjusted rear wing.

Turn 4 is then another brilliant passing opportunity, drivers exit turn 2 very slowly then accelerate up to 180 mph then brake to just 68 mph. The reason why turn 4 is such a good passing place, is because drivers can battle through turns 1 and 2, then continue their battle on the flat out section leading to turn 4 – turns 1 and 2 do not upset the cars aerodynamically much when following another. This enables cars to follow each other relatively closely through the first turns = good chances of passing in turn 4. Turn 9 is a passing opportunity, but really only on the first lap when a driver catches his rival unaware by suddenly diving up the inside of the corner.

Turn 15 is a brilliant passing opportunity, the drivers exit turn 14 very slowly and reach over 190 mph, then brake to just 52 mph. This passing opportunity is very similar to turn 1, in the sense that the entry and corner are very wide and it is a large braking zone from high speed. The middle of turn 15 is very wide, meaning drivers have previously raced side-by-side in the corner.

All in all, the Sepang track not only has a number of passing opportunities, they are genuinely decent that we have seen a lot of passing since 1999.

What to watch for

Torrential weather has turned the Malaysian GP into chaos in previous years. The rain can suddenly come, and suddenly stop and because it is so hot – the heat dries out the track very quickly. If this happens on Sunday, the race could be a lottery, with a lot of variation in strategies on when to pit for tyres and when each team predicts the rain will come. With regards to the Pirelli tyres, they are usually more sensitive to high lateral loads, which is a particular demand on the cars at Sepang. This means that drivers will be wary of excessive tyre degradation.

Car requirements

The Sepang circuit is tricky challenge for the engineers, good traction out of slow corners requires good mechanical grip. The faster corners, who there are many of, require a lot of downforce in order for the cars to carry as much speed through the high speed sweepers as possible. But then, the track has a lot of long straights – so aerodynamic efficiency is very important as well in order to reach high top speeds. Sepang is therefore a compromise of a number of different track characteristics that all have to be taken into account when teams set their cars up. Good low-end acceleration is important in order to get off slow turns quickly. But, the long straights are important in terms of lap time and overtaking.

Tyre selections

Pirelli will bring their Medium and Hard P Zero tyres to Malaysia. The graphic below shows Pirelli’s 2013 range of P Zero tyres:



Video footage

Here is an onboard lap of this Sepang circuit with Fernando Alonso, driving during the 2012 Malaysian Grand Prix weekend in his Ferrari F2012:



Weekend schedule in UK time:

Fri 22 March 2013

Friday Practice 1 02:00 – 03:30
Friday Practice 2 06:00 – 07:30

Sat 23 March 2013

Saturday Practice 05:00 – 06:00
Qualifying 08:00

Sun 24 March 2013

Start of Formation Lap 08:00
2013 Malaysian Grand Prix Race Start 08:03

Full weekend schedule in local time

Thursday 21st March:

Formula Press Conference – Press Room 15:00

Friday 22nd March:

Formula Paddock Club Pit Walk 09:00 – 09:45
Formula One Practice 1 10:00 – 11:30
GP2 Practice Session 11:55 – 12:25
Malaysian Super Series Practice Session A- B 12:50 – 13:10
Formula Paddock Club Pit Walk 13:10 – 13:45
Formula One Practice 2 14:00 – 16:30
GP2 Qualifying Session 15:55 – 16:25
Formula One Press Conference - Press Room 16:00 – 17:00
Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Practice Session 16:50 – 17:20
Malaysian Super Series Qualifying Session A- B 17:45 – 18:06
Malaysian Schools Pit Walk 18:30 – 19:15

Saturday 23rd March

Malaysian Super Series First Race 9 Laps or 20 Mins) Series A 09:30 – 09:55
Formula Paddock Club Pit Walk 10:00 – 10:45
Formula One Pit Stop Practice 10:00 – 10:45
GP2 First Race (31 Laps or 60 Minutes) 11:15 – 12:20
Formula One Practice 3 13:00 – 14:00
Formula Paddock Club Pit Walk 14:10 – 15:45
Malaysian Super Series First Race 9 Laps or 20 Mins) Series B 14:25 – 14:50
Formula One Qualifying 16:00
Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Qualifying Session 17:25 – 17:55

Sunday 24th March

Malaysian Super Series Second Race 9 Laps or 20 Mins) Series A 10:20 – 10:45
Malaysian Super Series Second Race 9 Laps or 20 Mins) Series B 11:10 – 11:35
Formula One Drivers Autograph Session 12:00 – 13:00
GP2 Second Race (10 Laps or 25 Minutes) 12:15 – 13:05
Porsche Carrera Cup Asia Race (10 Laps or 25 Mins) 13:30 – 14:00
Formula One Paddock Club Pit Walk 14:05 – 15:10
Formula One Drivers Introduction 14:30
Formula One Starting Grid Presentation & Opening Ceremony 14:45 – 15:15
Formula One National Anthem 15:46
Start of Formula One Formation Lap 16:00
Start of 2013 Formula 1 Malaysian Grand Prix 16:03

UK Television schedules – GMT time

In addition to Sky F1’s live coverage of the Malaysia Grand Prix, the BBC is showing extended highlights of both qualifying, and the 56 lap Grand Prix. Times of the TV coverage can be seen below:

Friday 22nd March

Sky Sports F1 Coverage

Practice One: 01:45 am
Practice Two: 05.45 am

Saturday 23rd March

BBC Coverage

Qualifying highlights: 1300-1415, BBC One/BBC One HD

Sky Sports F1 Coverage

Practice Three: 04:45 am
Qualifying: 07:00 am

Sunday 24th March

BBC Coverage

Race highlights: 1400-1600, BBC One/BBC One HD

Sky Sports F1 Coverage

Race: 06.30 am

Live timing and scoring is available for every session at http://www.formula1.com/ Registration is required to view live timing. If you wish to watch this Grand Prix outside the UK, please check your local listings.

Previous winners of Malaysian Grand Prix

2004 – Michael Schumacher – Ferrari
2005 – Fernando Alonso – Renault
2006 – Giancarlo Fisichella – Renault
2007 – Fernando Alonso – McLaren-Mercedes Benz
2008 – Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari
2009 – Jenson Button – Brawn-Mercedes Benz
2010 – Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull-Renault
2011 – Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull-Renault
2012 – Fernando Alonso – Ferrari

Enjoy the Grand Prix!


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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:26 am

The state of the tyres during practice was nothing short of astonishing. These are supposedly the 'medium' and 'hard' tyres, but you'd be hard pressed to tell, when every car had clear wear bands on the front and rear tyres.

I've never seen F1 tyres as bad as Max Chilton in the Maurussia had. The tyres were truly gone at the rear, and he could barley steer the car.

Mind you, headache for the teams might be delight for the viewers. Red Bull has the fastest car, no doubt about that. Vettel in particular can set a hot lap with ease, but the car is also very aggressive on its tyres. The Force India looks like a very good car; very well balanced, good stability under braking, traction and sufficient downforce to prevent excess sliding. When a Force India is faster than the McLaren, you know the latter is in trouble.

The cars lacking downforce will be in deep trouble on Sunday...

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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:15 pm

Race could be interesting tomorrow. i might even get up to watch it.

GP2 replays tonight. looking forward to that.
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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Sun Mar 24, 2013 1:08 am

MotorracingP wrote:


GP2 replays tonight. looking forward to that.

That was a great race, and 'our man' James Calado drove very well. Sprint Race tomorrow morning as well. Rule 1 of racing: don't crash into your teamate - you'll see what I mean...

With regards to F1, the degredation and sheer physical state of the tyres is going to cause a lot of headache tomorrow.

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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:23 pm

Lewis tries to pit in the McLaren pit box Razz

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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:52 pm

^^^ Indeed, but at least he had an excuse, whereas Button had no excuse with going into the Red Bull box!

Well, that was a fascinating race, wasn’t it? On-track drama, bitching over the team radio and more bitching off the track as well.

I feel very sorry for Webber. He drove an excellent race, and could have gone faster, but decided to follow team orders to turn the engine down. Vettel was instructed to turn his engine down, but failed to accept the instruction.

When one driver is using more revs than another driver, that isn’t a race – it’s not better than cheating. Vettel’s crocodile apology was pathetic, he knew precisely what he was doing, and couldn’t even be straight about that.

This:
Quote :
Mark is too slow, get him out of the way

Suggests he has no respect whatsoever.

Baby Vettel just needs to grow up. Last year, he blamed Karthikeyan for being in the way, when Vettel simply didn’t pass properly. In 2010, Vettel crashed into Webber – but it was Vettel who got the team hugs. Last year in Texas when Hamilton passed Vettel, baby Vettel screamed over the radio like some grumpy child stamping his feet.

Personally, Red Bull is damaging Vettel by not telling him when he acts in error. He might be a Red Bull product, but he never learns from his chopping, weaving and erratic driving because the team never tells him.


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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:26 am

Awkward is the best word to describe the atmosphere in the debrief room and on the podium. None of them wanted to be there for different reasons: Hamilton looked out of place Neutral, Webber looked full on volatile Evil or Very Mad, and Vettel looked sheepish, like he knew what he'd done was wrong Embarassed.

The problem is that Webber's had to do a fair amount of 'work for the team' to secure Red Bull's success in seasons past. The one time when it's Vettel's turn to do the same, his actions today show he can't do that. Ordering the team to get Webber out of the way, taking advantage of a team order designed to secure a 1-2 finish, then denying he ever heard the order, reeks strongly of a lack of respect for his team-mate, and the team.

It's one thing to race (which was great to see), but lying and being a hypocrite is another.


Webber's attempt at the 'finger':

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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:29 am

First things that stick in my mind are the safety concerns and I'm very surprised how they semed to go under radar in the media coverage. Ferrari should have brought Alonso in with that front wing damage and if had broken a second later Webber could have been killed. Another issue is with Webber putting Vettel into the pitwall in the same way Schumacher did the Rubens a few years ago in Hungary, if it wasn't okay then I don't think anythig has changed for it to be allowed now.

It was a good race in general, some good battles but teams made some bad mistakes which caused it to die out a bit towards the end. I wouldn't say fighting for the win spoilt the battle for the lead because if it was already decided anyway the neutral viewer gained from a driver not following team direction. The Hamilton Rosberg battle taking place on the radio did add something to the event but its not a direction F1 should be looking to for entertainment an further.

Button was having a solid race until Mcfail struck, they didn't seem to be too far off and with the fuel issue at Merc he may have got 4th. God knows what Force India did to the wheels. maybe it was something Mclaren gave them to try, I seem to remember McLaren had similar issues in a prevous race.

I don't get the sorry message from Vettel, it seems out of place considering how long he pressed Webber before making the pass and he could have allowed him back passed at any point. I couldn't care less either way because its not my team and at least it puts team orders more or less out the window for Redbull.
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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:51 am

i missed the start of the race.

it was good one. lots of drama but you got to feel for webber, how many time webber held postion for vettel. i mean even red bull were shocked and red bull do anything for vettel.

mclaren have problems can't seem to get it right though out the year whether its pits or under performing car.

i wonder if we get to the point where the red bull garage is seperated like in moto gp happened.......
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PostSubject: Re: F1 - 2013 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX - SEPANG   Mon Mar 25, 2013 10:05 am

The ‘misunderstanding’ excuse just exacerbates the situation, doesn’t it? Which part of not overtaking did Vettel misunderstand? Why can’t he just be honest and say he wanted the win?

The level of sincerity in his answers was terrible acting.

As it turns out, Red Bull were actually okay on tyres, but they were extremely worried about degradation before the race after experiencing fast degradation in practice. This is why Red Bull asked both teams to hold station. After their punishing tyre use in Melbourne, the team’s concerns were very valid on such a high-loading circuit.

We don’t know how it exactly played out, but perhaps Webber threw such an extreme block because he suddenly a saw a car he thought wouldn’t pass? Duckman is right, Webber’s block was a bit too much, but considering Vettel wasn’t supposed to be passing, Vettel deserved a hard route around Webber.

You also have to look back at how the whole situation started. Webber got an excellent start and leapfrogged Vettel, and in F1, the front-running car in a team gets first-preference over pitstops and track position.

IMO, Vettel despised the fact that he was behind Webber – it’s a rare occurrence and he couldn’t handle it.

At Silverstone in 2011, Vettel ran Webber off the circuit whilst the latter tried to pass, and then a radio call got issued to tell Webber to calm down. Webber obeyed that instruction.

Drivers will have their own egos and arrogance, but Vettel drives for his employer, not himself. He forgot that today.

Back in 1999 (at Malaysia, funnily enough), Michael Schumacher eased off to allow Eddie Irvine to optimise track position against Haikkinen. Schumacher may have done other questionable stuff, but he at least respected his employer’s instruction and respected the team's stance.

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