Max Verstappen, Toro Rosso, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

Top ten pictures from the 2015 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Ten of the best pictures which tell the story of the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend.

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

Lewis Hamilton had a special helmet designed for the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend but wasn’t allowed to use it because of the FIA have banned in-season helmet changes.

Raffaele Marciello

Raffaele Marciello, Sauber, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

The massive numbers on the side of the Sauber make it easy to identify their racers, in this case Ferrari development driver Raffaele Marciello who had his first run in an official F1 session during first practice.

Will Stevens

Will Stevens, Manor, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

Manor finally got their cars on track but Will Stevens’ participation was confined to practice. A fuel system problem at the end of the Saturday morning session kept him from qualifying and the problem couldn’t be rectified in time for him to start the race.

Max Verstappen

Max Verstappen, Toro Rosso, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

Toro Rosso newcomer Max Verstappen impressed in the rain-hit qualifying session, taking sixth on the grid.

Drivers pre-race

Drivers, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

There was no escaping the blazing sun for the drivers when they were assembled to observe the host country’s national anthem, a practice which was inaugurated at the Russian Grand Prix last year.

Start

Start, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

An unusual angle shows one of the longest dashes to turn one on the F1 calendar.

Felipe Nasr and Kimi Raikkonen

Felipe Nasr, Sauber, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

The evidence of contact is clear on the front-right of Felipe Nasr’s Sauber and on the car he hit – Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari limping in the background with a punctured left-rear tyre. Despite this delay and the damage, Raikkonen recovered to finish fourth.

Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button

Fernando Alonso, Jenson Button, McLaren, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

Both McLarens managed to start the race this time, but both Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button were destined not to finish.

Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo

Daniil Kvyat, Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

There was a full complement of Red Bulls in the race as well – Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo jockeyed for position despite both suffering brake problems.

Sebastian Vettel and Maurizio Arrivabene

Sebastian Vettel, Maurizio Arrivabene, Ferrari, Sepang International Circuit, 2015

Who would have though success would come so soon for Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari with new team principal Maurizio Arrivabene?

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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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35 comments on “Top ten pictures from the 2015 Malaysian Grand Prix”

  1. “a practice which was inaugurated at the Russian Grand Prix last year”
    That’s a good enough reason to stop doing it, then.
    It looks like a ceremony for someone who’s died, and the pre-race national anthem seemed to go on longer than the German and Italian ones put together after the race (and the Italian one is famously long!)

    1. Actually it’s one change I don’t mind. They always used to play the national anthem anyway so giving it a bit more formality and respect is not a bad thing.

      Of course you could see it as a sop to whichever dictator is sponsoring the race, but I prefer to think of it as a ‘thanks for welcoming us to your country’ to the local spectators.

    2. I’m with you on that one which I have said multiple times. what’s next… dress them in country’s traditional outfits?
      Not only they did race in Russia last year even though we all know what they did to Ukraine, they are now following they lead in pre-race ceremonies.
      Well, Bernie likes it.

    3. We could discuss whether any national anthem should be played at all, but I find it more rational to play the national anthem of the host country than the national anthem of the winning driver’s country of origin. A Grand Prix is a large undertaking involving hundreds of people and many resources, it represents the country to the world and bears the country’s name (i.e. Malaysian GP), and so on. A driver is just an individual that happened to be born somewhere, and they often don’t live there anymore.

    4. I don’t get why people are complaining about national athems being played. They are the hosts, why shouldn’t they play it? in the old days, the host’s flag was used to start the race. Russia, China, USA, whatever, I don’t mind.

    5. But I guess when they did it at every USA GP and almost every single big event in the States it’s alright but not in Russia. Forbid they show a little bit of nationalism on TV. As someone who feels not the slightest connection to where he is from I only admire people who do.

  2. The Manor never got much screen time and their sponsors probably won’t be bothered because there simply are none. Makes one wonder how long this last spasm will last.

    1. for screen time, you need a battle – be it intra or inter team. With just 1 car running, they got the screen time whenever someone lapped them!

    2. It’s not much about screen times, like in the Aussie Hamilton clearly got the win from very early that they didn’t bother to show the Mercedes cars at all, the camera was concentrating on various battles in midfield.

      I guess it’s more about performing well, a podium would definitely work, if not then at least getting your names and images with articles that praises you on the press is good enough. Like Sauber and Nasr after the Australian GP.

  3. There was no escaping the blazing sun for the drivers when they were assembled to observe the host country’s national anthem, a practice which was inaugurated at the Russian Grand Prix last year.

    Not that I think it was needed so badly but did they silences a minute for the flight in the Alpes or the victim at VLN? MotoGP did.

    1. As I know it was minute of silence to remember victims of plane crash in the Alpes.

  4. That Verstappen shot is very nice. I always like these kind if pics in rain, tail light blinking, rear of car , some water spray :)

  5. I might be wrong, but wasn’t there always a national anthem before the race? I remember there being even live performances by opera singers. I remember it being common since 90s, when I started watching F1.

    1. P.S.
      I know it probably wasn’t Jay-Z’s remix of the national anthem, but why isn’t Hamilton there in the lineup?

      1. Considering Button and Alonso aren’t in that shot either, perhaps it’s due to not being able to fit everyone in.

    2. Michael Brown
      31st March 2015, 14:18

      When I went to Montreal in 2013, the Canadian national anthem was played. I think the difference with Russia is that the drivers had to assemble for the national anthem.

      I don’t know about Europe, but in North America it’s tradition to play the national anthem(s) of the competing teams in sports like hockey and baseball.

      1. Thank God they aren’t playing 10 different anthems before every race. So you better accept one national anthem for the hosting country. :)

    3. wasn’t there always a national anthem before the race?

      Yes, but the practice of having the drivers assemble at the front of the grid to observe it is new (ish).

  6. I wish Verstappen overtaking the Bulls was put on this article, but still those photos are great.

  7. Another ridiculous first-season newbie question:

    Why is the grid ordered by fastest in qualifying? Wouldn’t it make more sense to rotate the grid positions regardless of how fast the cars are?
    Only asking because in a sport that’s worried about 1 or 2 team dominance and a lack of overtaking, wouldn’t it be better if the best cars didn’t always have the best starting position?
    Imagine if Mercedes occasionally rotated to start at the back of the pack – we’d see a lot more overtaking, more driver skill, and perhaps a more diverse set of winners.

    Or am I completely missing some logic behind the fastest-cars-always-start-at-the-front setup?

    1. It would take the incentive out of trying to be the fastest in qualifying. Doing away with qualifying would take away a large portion of the event. We get to theoretically see how fast these cars can go over one lap, as opposed to a race distance where the individual laps are almost always slower than the qualifying laps (unless it rains in qualifying, etc.).

      1. Yeah, I guess it does help to have more events than the actual race.

    2. The reward for having the fastest car is to start at the front in the race, the same situation as giving the teams more prize money for being the winners which in turn allows them to continue being at the front.

      It does sound counter intuitive when you put it that way but that’s how we get such high levels of competition between teams and drivers, it makes come backs like Williams last season or Ferrari in this one more commendable.

      1. I assumed that the reward for having the fastest car was simply having the fastest car in the race. But I can see how the advantage of having the fastest car AND the best position provides additional incentive for teams.

        Yep, the comeback thrill definitely makes sense – totally agree. I guess I just wished the extreme underdogs (not the Williams’ / Ferraris but the Manors / Force Indias) actually had a chance.

    3. As you’ve seen in Malaysia, in the race there are a lot of factors that can alter the result, like tyres degradation, fuel consumption, strategies, temperature,….

      So to win a race it’s not always just about making the car go as fast as possible, it’s about finding the balance between various stuffs to take the cars to the end and still being reasonably fast enough.

      Qualifying is a way to reward teams that make the fatest cars, period. Cars are run at conditions that can be maximized for speed.

      So it’s two different aspects of the car, to be fast and to be reliably fast.

  8. That special helmet of Hamilton looks rather good. Such a shame he didn’t use it anyway, as I’m sure the penalty would’ve been a relative small fine.

    1. It looks ghastly. There’s WAY too much going on on that helmet, and the colors are screaming.

      1. And you think his white helmet is any better Biggsy?

    2. Yeah, I’ve always liked Petronas colours, ever since the Sauber days in the 90’s

    3. Yeah I think it looks amazing, it would have been the best in the grid by far. I love that colour scheme.

  9. As a sports photographer myself, I guess this request is a bit self-serving, but would it be possible to include the actual photographer’s name in the photo credits, instead of just the agency or team credit? The men and women who get those great shots work their butts off, often in miserable and dangerous conditions and should get direct recognition.

  10. Missing a Vettel’s racing picture.

  11. I like Nasr and Kimi picture.

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