Perez is first Mexican on the podium in over 40 years

2012 Malaysian Grand Prix stats and facts

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Sergio Perez scored his best result to date with second in the Malaysian Grand Prix.

It was the first time a Mexican driver has appeared on the podium since Pedro Rodriguez finished second in the 1971 Dutch Grand Prix for BRM – 19 years before Perez was born.

This was also the best result for Sauber as an independent team. They won the 2008 Canadian Grand Prix during their period of ownership by BMW, when they raced as BMW-Sauber.

They finished third as Sauber on six previous occasions, the last being with Heinz-Harald Frenzten in the 2003 United States Grand Prix.

Out of the 679 podium finishes for a Ferrari-engined car, this was only the third scored by a car that wasn’t a Ferrari. The others were David Coulthard’s third place for Red Bull in the 2006 Monaco Grand Prix and Sebastian Vettel’s win for Toro Rosso in Italy two years later.

Perez also led a race for the first time in his F1 career, becoming the 160th different driver to do so.

Alonso joins top five F1 winners

Fernando Alonso’s 28th Grand Prix win surely must be counted as one of his best. It moves him past Jackie Stewart’s tally of 27 and makes him the fifth most successful driver of all time in terms of races won.

He started the race from eighth on the grid, the second-lowest position he has ever won a race from. He won the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix from 15th, but the less said about that race the better.

This is the first time he’s won the same race with three different constructors: he won with Renault in 2005, McLaren in 2007 and now Ferrari.

Team mate Felipe Massa had a dreadful race and finished 15th. Having failed to finish in Australia, it leaves him 19th in the drivers’ championship behind both Marussias: Timo Glock has had a 14th place finish and Charles Pic has a 15th and a 17th.

Hamilton’s 21st pole position

Pole position went to Lewis Hamilton for the 21st time in his career, giving him one more than Alonso and Damon Hill.

Despite starting both of this year’s races from pole position, he has only led for 14 out of the 114 laps.

Just two races into his comeback, Kimi Raikkonen has already added to his tally of race fastest laps. He has the third-highest tally of any driver with 36, behind Michael Schumacher (76) and Alain Prost (41).

Sixth for Bruno Senna was his best result so far. It gives Williams eight points, three more than they scored in the whole of last year.

Jean-Eric Vergne scored the first points of his F1 career with eighth place. He is the 320th F1 driver to score points.

There were nine different constructors in the points: Ferrari, Sauber, McLaren, Red Bull, Lotus, Williams, Force India, Toro Rosso and Mercedes. That equals the record set in the 2010 European Grand Prix when Red Bull, McLaren, Williams, Renault, Force India, BMW-Sauber, Ferrari, Toro Rosso and Mercedes all scored.

Romain Grosjean has completed just four racing laps so far this year.

Finally, Narain Karthikeyan equalled the highest position officially held by an HRT driver during a race. He was ninth on lap 13, a position he also occupied during last year’s Canadian Grand Prix. Pic also held eighth place for Marussia for one lap.

Review the year so far in statistics here:

Spotted any other interesting stats and facts from the Malaysian Grand Prix? Share them in the comments.

2012 Malaysian Grand Prix

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    Image © Sauber F1 Team, McLaren/Hoch Zwei

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    103 comments on “Perez is first Mexican on the podium in over 40 years”

    1. Out of the 679 podium finishes for a Ferrari-engined car, this was only the third scored by a car that wasn’t a Ferrari. The others were David Coulthard’s third place for Red Bull in the 2006 Monaco Grand Prix and Sebastian Vettel’s win for Toro Rosso in Italy two years later.

      I guess you didn’t count Sauber’s own podiums because of the rebadged Petronas engine, right?

      1. I thought that too. Officially Petronas bought the engines from Ferrari, renamed them, then sold them on to Sauber, so they weren’t really Ferraris at all.

        1. It wasnt like that, it was just a way to get better advertising, Ferrari was still obliged to provide support to Sauber.

        2. @lin1876 didn’t they just renamed them? Like Infinity with Red Bull and Playlife with the Mecachrome engines in the Benettons… I seem to remember they did that, just renamed the engines.

          1. RB engines have not been renamed Infinity, that was just a rumor.

          2. Red Bull success made Renault sell their stake in Renault F1 Team therefore Renault decided to stick with Red Bull instead of renaming the engine to Infiniti which is a brand owned by Nissan which is owned by Renault.

      2. Exactly.

    2. Love the stats as always. Where do you get the all from?

      1. @lin1876 You should see the state of my bookshelves…

        Then there’s various website for cross-referencing, and ample notes I’ve compiled myself – see the 2012 statistics pages links in the article.

    3. Jean-Éric Vergne is also the youngest Frenchman to score Formula 1 points.

    4. There were eight different constructors in the points, one fewer than the record of nine set in the 2010 European Grand Prix when Red Bull, McLaren, Williams, Renault, Force India, BMW-Sauber, Ferrari, Toro Rosso and Mercedes all scored.

      actually wasn’t it 9 different constructors in the points? only force india got a double points finish. so that would equal the record from the 2010 european gp?

      1. So it is – daft mistake. Have corrected it.

    5. Actually, Karthikeyan was 8th at one point on lap 6 if you go to 2.30 you get to see his position.

      1. Yes, but this wasn’t at the end of a lap, so isn’t counted.

      2. Liuzzi has been 8th in an HRT before.

        Again, somehow, I don’t think it counts!

        1. Every time I see that I think he’s been playing too much GT5… when racing online there’s always one berk who comes flying up the inside :D

    6. Finally, Narain Karthikeyan equalled the highest position officially held by an HRT driver during a race.

      The word “officially” was used so that Liuzzi’s Monza antics aren’t counted.

      1. @David-A as per the comment above, it’s official when the position is held at the end of a lap.

    7. Great job keith

    8. Bruno Senna’s points.
      The first points scored by a Senna for Williams since the first attempt 18 years ago.

      1. Such a sad stat.

        1. Yes a rather painful stat.
          That earlier marraige held so much promise. But fate conspired to make it an unfortunate one.
          I think he had been on pole in all 3 races.he started.

          1. Also, 1994 was Senna’s worst season, finishing with 0 points.

        2. this must be the most heartbreaking stat i have ever heard…

    9. Paul Gilbert
      26th March 2012, 18:39

      Drivers to have won at the same venue for 3+ different teams:

      Moss at Monza – Maserati (1956), Vanwall (1957), Cooper (1959)
      Fangio at Spa – Alfa Romeo (1950), Maserati (1954), Mercedes (1955)
      Fangio at Buenos Aires – Maserati (1954, 1957), Mercedes (1955), Ferrari (1956)
      Fangio at Nurburgring – Mercedes (1954), Ferrari (1956), Maserati (1957)
      Prost at Silverstone – Renault (1983), McLaren (1985, 1989), Ferrari (1990), Williams (1993)
      Alonso at Kuala Lumpur – Renault (2005), McLaren (2007), Ferrari (2012)

      It seems as though every time an HRT is in the top 10 at any point, the driver in question ends up getting a penalty at the end of the race. It happened to Karthikeyan in Canada 2011 and Liuzzi in Italy 2011.

      Also, I notice that the top 2 in the last race both finished outside the points. When did this last happen? Obviously there have been instances where both drivers have DNF’d (notably Korea 2010).

      1. Wow, Alonso become only the fourth driver ever to achieve that! I guess, realistically, only Raikkonen and Schumacher have a chance of doing that this year. If Vettel moves teams and wins at Monza he could achieve it as well.

      2. By the way, great stat&research – thanks a lot for sharing.

      3. That really shows how easy it was in Fangio’s day to just hop from team to team to have the best possible equipment at any given race. Impressive that Prost is the only driver to win the same race with 4 teams! Doubt that will be equalled anytime soon.

        1. @US_Peter

          I guess when you have the skills and capability…anything could be made to look easy my friend. There was an Interview with Sir Stirling Moss some years back…you should watch how he talked about Fangio, he had the highest regard for him as a racer.

          1. @jaymenon10 I didn’t mean to denigrate Fangio’s achievements in any way. On the contrary I think it was precisely because he was the best that the best equipment was available to him. I was merely pointing out what a different time it was compared to today when the top drivers are locked into multi year contracts sometimes as long as half a decade. That could be a long time to wait it out in an uncompetitive car. Of course Alonso proved yesterday that even in modern F1 a big red dog can win a race at the hands of a skilled master in difficult conditions.

            1. Wasn’t that proved by Vettel at Monza in 2008, Panis at Monaco 1996 and Senna at Donington 1993? ;)

    10. According to the timing Pic was 5th at one point but I don’t think he held it for a whole lap.

    11. Perez became the 174th driver to score a podium. And with Senna’s 6th place, 287 drivers have now finished a race in the top six. Also with Senna and Vergne, 427 drivers have finished a race in the top 10.

      By the way, I’m disregarding the Indy 500 rounds in the fifties in these statistics.

      1. Also with Senna and Vergne, 427 drivers have finished a race in the top 10.

        Senna got a point last year though, didn’t he?

        1. Yup, I was going to talk about top 8 finishes, but decided to skip directly to top 10’s and forgot that to delete Senna’s name :P The numbers are still correct though


      1. surely a big attendance at the US GP me thinks

        1. Let’s hope so, despite all the troubles, F1 should be in the US .

      2. YES finally some swearing at F1fanatic.

    13. Does this also make Pic the only driver on the grid to not have any points in his F1 career, now that Vergne has scored points?

      1. No Grosjean hasn’t any either.

        1. Still, the fact that 22 out of the 24 drivers on the grid have scored points isn’t a bad reflection of the talent on the grid today……although I do hasten to add talent is used in the most loose sense for some drivers…

          1. Having world championship points to your name doesn’t mean you have earned them racing with other drivers as my new favourite F1 driver ever has proven.

            I won’t tell you his full name, all i can say is that his surname begins with K and ends with

            1. I dont think its possible to tell Narains name usually indian guys have up to 20 names.

            2. @ukfanatic Oh, really !!!

    14. I think Vettel’s 3 fingers in 5 secs to Karthikeyan is something i haven’t seen recently. 0.6 fingers per sec should be a record i think.

      1. ROFL!!!
        COTD definitely :)

      2. hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

        Since Seb didn’t get much practice with his finger this year yet, he forgot which one to use! :)

      3. What bad sportsmanship. :c

    15. It was the first time a Mexican driver has appeared on the podium since Pedro Rodriguez finished second in the 1971 Dutch Grand Prix for BRM

      And Rodriguez finished second to a Ferrari in a rain affected race

    16. alonso + ferrari = ultimate combo

      1. so schumacher + ferrari = what?

        1. Super ultimate mega combo?

    17. Not only were there 9 teams in the top 10, there were 8 different teams in the top 8 – I don’t think that’s happened before!

      1. Also, every team that managed to score points last year did so yesterday as well.

      2. I think that is my favourite stat – I know there were changeable conditions yesterday but even so it shows that the grid is incredibly competitive and nearly all teams have a shout of getting good points if things go their way.

        Also wouldn’t have put money before the race on Force India being the only team to have two cars in the points

      3. Paul Gilbert
        26th March 2012, 22:50

        Belgium 2005 had 9 different teams in the top 9 (but only 8 drivers scored in those days).

        1. Even better!

    18. This is the first time since Hockenheim 2010 that someone other than Alonso, Vettel, Webber, Button and Hamilton finished in the top 2. Before Malaysia, those 5 had shared the last 18 podiums, since Malaysia last year. The 5 are also the only winners of the last 44 Grands Prix, since Barrichello’s win in Monza 2009, and they’ve each won one of the last 5 races.

      In the last four races, the winner of the previous one failed to get on the podium.

      The last 5 races that were red-flagged because of rain (last 6 red flags minus Monaco 2011, which was dry) have an interesting pattern between Alonso and Button.
      – Nurburgring 2007 – Alonso wins, Button fails to score
      – Malaysia 2009 – Button wins, Alonso fails to score
      – Korea 2010 – Alonso wins, Button fails to score
      – Montreal 2011 – Button wins, Alonso fails to score
      – Malaysia 2012 – Alonso wins, Button fails to score

      1. Who was the last new winner – was it Webber? Seems a long time now since we had one.

        1. Yep, Nurburgring 2009. There were 3 new winners the year before that. We could’ve had a new one this weekend, disappointing it didn’t happen.

        2. @bullfrog Off the top of my head there were two in 2009 – Kovalainen and Webber – and since Webber no new ones.

          1. @keithcollantine – Kovalainen did not win in 2009, in fact he failed to get a single podium.

            1. Ah that was 2008 wasn’t it? I said it was off the top of my head!

          2. Kubica, Kovalainen and Vettel were all ’08

      2. @enigma: interesting stat about the redflag races and Alonso and Button: It means that next time Button will win and Alonso fail to score:-) Now they know!

      3. Nice pattern – how did you find that?

        We have already had the same number of different teams on the podium as last year (4). Of course after Malaysia last year it was only Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari. Hopefully that won’t be repeated!

      4. Ehm, about those stats, its missing Monaco 2011 where we had a red flag as well. Only that was won by Vettel ahead of Alonso and Button.

        1. May be he meant red flags caused due to rain :)

        2. @bascb

          The last 5 races that were red-flagged because of rain (last 6 red flags minus Monaco 2011, which was dry)

          1. Ahm, yes I see. sorry @enigma

    19. I wonder if it’s ever happened before that two drivers that were genuienly too slow to qualify in the top 8 managed to take a 1-2. Quite a surprise result!

    20. Another telling stat.
      cosworth the only engine supplier not to score any points.

    21. This stat is slightly out-of-date, but I thought I’d share it after Perez’ podium and Barrichello’s first Indycar race both this weekend: Barrichello’s never managed to score points in a race started by Perez.

      1. Paul Gilbert
        27th March 2012, 22:49

        And Massa has never scored points in a race that Grosjean has started.

    22. Qualifying stats:

      21. pole for HAM, 1. pole for HAM in Malaysia.
      149. pole for McLaren,
      61. Double pole for McLaren – as much as Williams, Ferrari is only team with more: 70.
      1. Double pole, 2 in a row since 2007 for McLaren – back then it was 3 in a row – maybe we get there this year also?
      First time since 2001 that a team gets 2 double poles in the first 2 races. (in 2001: SCH and BAR for Ferrari).
      84. pole for a Mercedes engine.
      First time since European GP 2009 we have 3 Mercedes engines on the first 3 places on the grid. (in 2009: HAM, KOV, both McL, BAR (Brawn GP).
      Best startposition for SCH since Japan 2006 (2.).
      First time since Belgium and Italy 2009 with 2 times in a row no RBR on row 1.

      1. Speaking of poles, Button’s won 7 Grands Prix since the last race weekend he was on pole position (Monaco 2009). I’m not sure on this one, but I think only Lauda and Prost have managed more wins in a row without poles in between, 8 each.

        Also, Giancarlo Fisichella has started a race from pole position more recently than Jenson Button!

        1. I like the Fisichella stat. If the McLaren continues do dominate in qualifying I think Button will get the upper hand over Hamilton at some point this year to claim pole.

      2. Since Malaysia 2010, Vettel was the best German in qualifying for 35 times in a row. Now it’s been Schumacher twice in a row.

        1. Oooops – forgot about Hulkenberg. 20 in a row, not 35.

          1. Fantastic stats @Enigma

      1. Now who wants to put a bet on Trulli? :D

    23. I don’t know if I repeat something already mentioned but:
      217. win for Ferrari Team and 218. for Ferrari engine.
      HAM in the points for the 70th time.
      VET no 11 – worst completed race result since Belgium GP 2010.
      Alonso’s 7000th lap as race leader – WOW
      Button no 14 – his worst result ever in Malaysia
      Massa no 15 – his worst result ever in Malaysia
      SCH in his 11th Malaysian GP in the points.
      Senna’s best result on the day, 28 years after first GP of Ayrton.

      1. @palle, where’d you come up with 7000 laps led for Alonso? According to GPGuide, he’s 10th on the list of all time laps led, with 1469, and has a long ways to go to match Schumacher’s 5114, who even falls quite a bit short of 7000.

        1. @US-Peter Damn, You called my bluff. I just made it up to be interesting;-)
          No, I got it from a German site, and I don’t know where they have it from. So sorry that it apparently is wrong. This makes me question the rest of the stat info I put up, not good.

          1. Maybe they mean that during his 7,000th race lap overall, he was race leader?

    24. Sauber scored some great championship points today!

    25. Paul Gilbert
      26th March 2012, 22:27

      This is the second time in the last 4 seasons that a Ferrari has won the race after being challenged by an unlikely driver who was tipped to move to Ferrari later that season (on the previous occasion, Fisichella moved to Ferrari for the very next race).

      Also, Massa has failed to score in the first 2 races whilst his team-mate has won the latter race (after an Englishman won for McLaren in the first race). This also happened in 2008 – and we know what happened then!

    26. Michael Brown (@)
      26th March 2012, 23:00

      Perez becomes the 8th youngest driver to finish on the podium, at 22 years 60 days old. Lewis Hamilton is 9th, 10 days older.

    27. He started the race from eighth on the grid, the second-lowest position he has ever won a race from.

      And I think is the lowest position in the grid for a winner of this race. Previous one was KIMI starting from P7, I don’t remember very well the year.

    28. Perez was the first driver born in 1990s to achieve podium. I had to look on other firsts there. First ever World Championship race at Silverstone 1950 had a podium of Farina (1900s), Fagioli (1890s) and Parnell (1910s).

      After that it’s:
      1920s Mike Nazaruk/Manuel Ayulo (Indianapolis 1951)
      1930s Troy Ruttman (Indianapolis 1952)
      1940s Jochen Rindt (Belgium 1966)
      1950s Jody Scheckter (Belgium 1974)
      1960s Ayrton Senna (Monaco 1984)
      1970s Rubens Barrichello (Pacific 1994)
      1980s Fernando Alonso (Malaysia 2003)

      Discounting Indys, the honor on 1920s goes to Jose Froilan Gonzalez, for the 1930s to Eugenio Castellotti.

    29. I wish the drivers were as clued up as we were about all these facts. I’m sure it would make (most of) them feel very humble indeed when all these famous names are mentioned.

      1. I couldn’t agree more.

    30. Here’s another one: Of the 114 laps so far this year, the two McLaren drivers have each spent half of them in front of the other.

    31. I’m sure the driver concentrate much more on getting around the track as fast as possible, and they better. A race driver has no use for feeling humble, when driving. That is the time when he has to believe he is better than anyone who has ever lived, and that he is able to pull of the next overtake or defence. Us, the fans, on the contrary, expects our hero to be humble, down to earth, and be able to evaluate, in a professional manner, how the race went for everyone, right after taking their helmet of. The interviewers clearly don’t fathom that the driver haven’t watched the race – he drove it, and therefore he can’t really comment on how the race went for another driver, whom he had little contact with during the race.

    32. Paul Gilbert
      27th March 2012, 22:56

      Perez also led a race for the first time in his F1 career, becoming the 160th different driver to do so. claims he is the 161st. The difference may be down to on-track leader vs aggregate leader (in races from yesteryear that were stopped and then re-started).

    33. Simply mega seeing nine different constructors in the points. That bodes very well for the rest of the season.

      Only Mansell (31) Senna (41) Prost (51) and Schumacher (91) are ahead of Alonso on wins now. Any bets as to where he will finish his career at? I’d say he is a shoe in to pass Mansell for 4th, but so is Vettel, and possibly Hamilton or Kimi. I can even see Fernando eclipsing Senna’s tally, but if this high level of competition is maintained I don’t see him reaching Prost and certainly not Michael. Only Vettel seems to have a realistic shot at that, and that is only if he can pull RedBull back up to the top.

    34. @Adam Tate: I don’t think Vettel can pull RedBull back at the top – probably only Newey can do this. Alonso was very efficient and lucky these 2 races, but if Ferrari don’t come up with a better Ferrari, then his lead will eventually crumble over the season.

    35. Felipe, Marussia faster than you. :)

    36. F1 has had 5 different winners in the last 5 races: Vettel, Hamilton, Webber, Button, Alonso.

    37. For the first time since he won in Japan 2010, Vettel has gone four races without winning.

      Last year, Vettel had a 24-point lead after two races. This year, the top seven drivers in the WDC are separated by 19 points. Even in the competitive 2010 season, only the top six were separated by 19 points, although the top seven were separated by just 9 points after three races.

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