2017 Malaysian Grand Prix grid

2017 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Row 1 1. Lewis Hamilton 1’30.076
2. Kimi Raikkonen 1’30.121
Row 2 3. Max Verstappen 1’30.541
Red Bull
4. Daniel Ricciardo 1’30.595
Red Bull
Row 3 5. Valtteri Bottas 1’30.758
6. Esteban Ocon 1’31.478
Force India
Row 4 7. Stoffel Vandoorne 1’31.582
8. Nico Hulkenberg 1’31.607
Row 5 9. Sergio Perez 1’31.658
Force India
10. Fernando Alonso 1’31.704
Row 6 11. Felipe Massa 1’32.034
12. Jolyon Palmer 1’32.100
Row 7 13. Lance Stroll 1’32.307
14. Carlos Sainz Jnr 1’32.402
Toro Rosso
Row 8 15. Pierre Gasly 1’32.558
Toro Rosso
16. Romain Grosjean 1’33.308
Row 9 17. Kevin Magnussen 1’33.434
18. Pascal Wehrlein 1’33.483
Row 10 19. Marcus Ericsson 1’33.970
20. Sebastian Vettel No time

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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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84 comments on “2017 Malaysian Grand Prix grid”

  1. Bottas should retire already.

    1. Joakim Jarnstrom
      30th September 2017, 10:54

      Bottas drove with the new aero-package, Hamilton with the old.

      1. Sooo…?!?

        1. Joakim Jarnstrom
          30th September 2017, 11:00

          The new aero-package is clearly worse than than the old, Bottas and Hamilton dont have the same car.

          1. Well Lauda wasn’t sure it’s worse when asked on Sky F1 just now.

          2. 7 tenths in that? No way. Bottas has been off more than half a second for a number of races now.

          3. Joakim Jarnstrom
            30th September 2017, 11:09

            If the new is better than the old package, then why use the old. They have new data that show that the old is better and therefor gave that to Hamilton for camparison with the new packaget used by Bottas. Why give the worse aero-package to Hamilton, or why use the old at all?

          4. Bottas preferred the new aero package but Hamilton did not like it. Toto has just said that the new aero package is clearly faster based on all the test data.

          5. Joakim Jarnstrom
            30th September 2017, 11:17

            So Hamilton chose the slower package and would have been even faster with the new aero, strange? What is faster in theory is not always faster in practise.

          6. Tota has just said the new aero package will be used in Japan. It is probably a setup issue that prevents the new package from performing properly.

      2. Bottas CHOSE the new aero package, Lewis requested the old one as he felt more comfortable on it don’t get it twisted.

        1. Joakim Jarnstrom
          30th September 2017, 11:25

          Bottas did not chose the new aero! After Lewis chose the old aero – Bottas HAD to use the new aero for data collection and comparison.

          1. bottas has been atleast 5/10ths slower than lewis 4x in a row now.
            so it cant be all down to aero.

          2. Joakim Jarnstrom
            30th September 2017, 11:36

            Probably not, however, this can be down to aero.

          3. So why did Toto just say on my TV on sky sports that Bottas felt the rear was more planted on the new setup after he got to grips with it?

            Stop making things up to suit your agenda, Lewis pasted him as usual.

      3. Usual stuff, when Lewis is faster it’s the car, when he’s not it’s the driver….Zzzzzzz

        1. Say it again Rick :) @joakim whatever that makes you sleep soundly tat night!

          1. Joakim Jarnstrom
            30th September 2017, 12:48

            If you cant read, dont write.

          2. Even if you read as much as you can you will never know the exact reasons why 1 driver is faster than the other unless you are directly associated with that driver in the team or you are the driver himself.
            Hamilton isn’t perfect but when it comes to qualifying a simple look at how he has done against his team mates (some very good drivers and world champions) he has been very difficult to beat.
            Choosing an old aero package against a new one could have been down to the drivers choice, just like car set up….. setting up the car is just one tool a driver uses to beat his team mate.

    2. I am guessing this is sarcastic, but I still don’t think Bottas is doing that bad a job. Even though he was doing better at the start of the season, I think we’ve got to consider that he’s only in his first year with the team and this is Hamilton’s 5th. Many people seem to say he if far worse than Rosberg. Well I don’t think that is the case. Hamilton looked much better than Rosberg in 2014. And this was only Hamilton’s 2nd year with the team while Rosberg had been there since 2010. So that was his 5th year. So now Hamilton is in his 5th and this is Bottas’s first and the team are also much more under pressure by Ferrari and even Red Bull. This wasn’t the case over the previous 3 years when Mercedes were dominating. This made both Hamilton’s and Rosberg’s weak performances not look that bad. Especially in qualifying as even if they were behind by big gaps, it was often not enough to loose the front row. This has sometimes been the case this year, but not often.

      So basing it on this, Bottas is certainly doing a decent job and I think we should wait until a fair way through next year before deciding he isn’t up to the task of being a very good driver for this team. He may not be as good as Rosberg was last year, but he also hasn’t been to blame for incidents like Rosberg was. I also think Bottas and Hamilton get on better together and seem to keep out of trouble with each other. Unlike last year in Spain where Hamilton and Rosberg made a mess of it. I think Bottas has potential to get to be as good as Rosberg. But I think he’ll only be able to challenge Hamilton to the title if Mercedes remain to be pretty much the best and Hamilton either has a poor season or suffers from a lot of bad luck. This may be unlikely be it’s possible.

      1. And also to add for those who criticize Bottas, many say Hamliton is the best and he stands out from the rest. If he is clearly the best and he stands out, then he’s got to be a fair bit better than Bottas. But if Bottas can sometimes get close and sometimes beat him, surely that means Bottas is at leased very good overall? He usually recovers pretty well in the races if he under performs in qualifying. Look back to Italy. And this weekend, He looked pretty close to Hamilton until Q3. He was a tiny fraction behind in P2, and ahead in P3 and Q2. I think his pace may be nearly as good as Hamilton’s in the race. If Bottas is decent in the race, I think he should be able to manage 2nd.

      2. I was making fun of the people saying Kimi should retire after every bad session he has, but the joke went over most people’s heads I think. :)

  2. Nail-biting finale for qualy. Exciting stuff! But my word what a lap from Hamilton. Brilliant!

  3. Poor Ric just can’t catch a break this season against Max. Again just 0.05 secs difference with Max leading.

    The stats really don’t tell how close this pair had been all season.

    1. I think at this point- there is no doubt that Max has better raw pace in qualy. In the race however it’s a different story.

      1. How so? Max has been ahead in the race almost every time – before out of his control retirements.

        1. Well Max has tended to retire alot earlier before the race unfolds or tangled unnecessarily with others. So he’s not totally blameless himself. So it’s hard to tell if Max could maintain his advantage throughout the grand prix.

          1. Unnecessarily, like he could have, who knows, not raced or so?
            He was a victim in all 3 cases, not the cause.

          2. He is not fault free – Hungary for instance. But none of his own retirements was his own doing.

          3. He was a victim in all 3 cases

            Spain was Verstappen’s fault, much in the same way Singapore was Vettel’s

        2. I looked up the 2017 results of Max vs Dan, only the races where both were classified as finishers (4).
          Take from these stats what you will.
          Average finishing position – Dan 4, Max 5.5
          Average points per race – Dan 12.25, Max 9.5
          Wins – Dan 0, Max 0
          WDC Points = Dan 49, Max 38
          Podiums – Dan 1, Max 1
          Seems Dan might have Max covered off slightly at this point.
          Source: Wikipedia but I may unintentionally have missed a stat or 2. I stand corrected as usual.

          1. Take from these stats what you will

            I feel it is highly unfair to take any statistical judgement from a sample of 4 races.

          2. You can always find a stat to support any argument and ’authorize’ a statement. Good job..

            Now do another comparison and take all races just before MV retired. Another stat, supporting the opposite theory. Still not very useful though.

    2. @homerlovesbeer But winning by 0,001 or 1,000 is the same really. You’re ahead in both cases. Nobody looks back at whatever the gap was in a week. Verstappen has outdriven Ricciardo on every front this season, however small the gap was at times.

      1. Not sure I entirely agree with that. On balance I would say yes VER has overall had the edge- but certainly not on every front as you put it. And to use your own logic against you to a certain degree- is anyone going to care about how RIC beat VER this season? By that I mean history will show- on paper that RIC outscored VER comprehensively and there isn’t going to be an asterisk to that unless you’re an avid F1 fan who knows the sport very well.

        1. Name me one front other than reliability and being so far back that you don’t get caught up in what happens at the front, where Ricciardo has been ahead of Verstappen

    3. @homerlovesbeer there’s been 3 tenths difference in MV’s advantage. Can’t call it luck.

      1. * on average

    4. @homerlovesbeer It shows exactly how close the pair is and it also show just how useless the number two drivers in the other top teams are.

      1. Agreed. I think the Perez-Ocon line up vs. say the Hulk-Palmer line up shows the same thing.

        As for the top teams, I recon Seb would have been two tenths quicker (if not more) than RAI as he is most of the time, which would have put him on pole today.

  4. A great lap from Hamilton. I think tomorrow should be a really exciting race, especially if Raikkonen can get another fast start in. Lots of stories up and down the field. Hamilton trying to beat Raikkonen to maximise the opportunity (and vice versa), two closely matched Red Bull’s, the Force India’s, McLaren’s and Hulkenberg all tightly packed and Gasly’s first race… not to mention a certain German in a red car trying to force his way back through the field. Oh and the potential for rain? Tasty!

  5. Well as I guessed yesterday..Hamilton on Pole…not a surprise.

    Ricardo is rubbish at qualy.

    What happened to Alonso at the end? He was slower than Vandoorne all day.

    Anyway, this just reaffirms that the season is over. Bring on 18.

    Congrats Lewis on becoming 4 time world champion.

    1. But the season isn’t over yet. Is it ? Wait, I thought there was still 5 more races. When they said the final Malaysian Gp I wasn’t aware it was the final race of 2017 too ? The calendar still has more fixtures.. I think the calendar needs updating because it says there’s a race in Suzuka next weekend but you’re saying the season is over ? I don’t understand.

      1. I was under the impression there was still the issue of a race tomorrow to complete too, but I guess not. Extra long live in for me.

      2. I was being sarcastic.

        Vettel is down in the dumps, and if Lewis gets a good start..that’s him gone.

        It will be a healthy lead.

        1. Or, there’s the possibility that Ricciardo, Bottas and Hamilton tangle into turn 1 (as we saw in Singapore, this is most definitely possible). Verstappen breaks down because, let’s face it, thats what seems to happen to him. Vettel should be able to fight through to P6 fairly easily (which becomes P2 behind Raikkonen after the above happens). Raikkonen and Vettel swap, meaning a 25 point swing to Vettel leaving him just 3 points behind Hamilton with 5 races to go.

          Yeah, 2017 is certainly finished…

    2. See you in 2018 then. 👋🏽

    3. Ricardo is rubbish at qualy.

      Uhm….sure. 0.05s difference tells me how close they are in terms of speed and in the race RIC normally makes up in points what he ‘lacks’ in qualy and then some. He’s over a 100 pts clear of his ‘quicker’ teammate who keeps getting involved in first lap crashes.

    4. @jaymenon10 Vandoorne told Belgian TV that Alonso had a new aero package and not Vandoorne. So there is a chance it might explain the differences – or not – as Vandoorne has always been an excellent qualifier and is getting to grips in this second half of the season.
      What is sure is that Vandoorne did an excellent lap as Hulkenberg was ahead in Q1 and Q2.

    5. It’s hilarious seeing these “prophets of doom” (as I would call them) here – to quote one of motorsport’s all time legends, “Anything happens in Grand Prix Racing, and it usually does”.

  6. Simply brilliant from Hamilton. Mercedes have been nowhere all weekend so to steal pole is just incredible. Ferrari is still the faster race car so it might be hard to keep Kimi behind tomorrow, especially without Bottas to help. Vettel will need some luck but I wouldn’t rule out a podium just yet as his racepace should be incredible.

  7. I think this is the point where it’ll become more obvious that the Mercedes is the better car overall. Yup, reliability is what makes a car better too. Probably VET would have been on pole, but reliability problems sent him to the back of the grid. There shouldn’t be any problem at all for HAM to get a podium tomorrow, while there aren’t many chances VET will get in the top5 by the end of the race. Only a SC period in the 2nd part of the race could help VET to get around the podium. Anyway, the champ is over unless HAM has a DNF too. In the meantime, I expect to see HAM increasing his points lead at the end of the day tomorrow by at least another 10 points… which is a loooooot.

    1. I think it’s more a question of the Mercedes team being better overall.

      1. To be honest, I think too that Mercedes as a team is somehow better than Ferrari… and also a little luckier. Same thing with HAM – seems luckier than VET in the end: he had the “luck” of having an opponent doing too many big mistakes, but also with more tech problems too.

        1. I don’t know @mg1982 Hamilton has had some bad luck too. His headrest in Baku ( how often does that happen in F1 ! ) and his gearbox grid drop in Austria. In my mind Vettel wasn’t just unlucky last weekend, he was at fault. Sure a DNF isn’t good but it was himself getting a slow start and being too aggressive which caused the DNF, not just bad luck. Vettel was also very lucky to not be landed with a race ban after his tantrum in Baku.

          1. Yeah, didn’t say different. HAM had his share of bad luck/issues (tell me a driver who had a season without any kind of problems), but in the end VET lost more points than HAM so far due to his own mistakes or tech problems.

          2. If we’re having this conversation it’s worth mentioning Vettel’s tyre blow-out in Silverstone, too.

          3. I don’t think that was due to bad luck tho @ninjenius. it wasn’t a random event that Vettel had no control over. The team pitted early to try gain an advantage but in doing so they went over the recommended laps on those tyres from Perreli. I don’t see how that’s bad luck. bad planning/ strategy but not bad luck at all.

          4. @mg1982, I hear you, I wish that Lewis received such sympathy throughout his reliability stricken career at Mclaren and his disastrous 2016 season. Nobody mopped about how unlucky he was, but it was often insinuated that the cars breaking down is his own making by “overdriving”…

          5. I don’t see how that’s bad luck. bad planning/ strategy but not bad luck at all.

            I see where you’re coming from, but by that logic the Baku headrest wasn’t down to luck either, it was bad “planning”, a human error if you will, in incorrectly placing the headrest back in place. This is where these conversations seem to blur the line in what does and doesn’t constitute luck, much of it is subjective.

        2. Nothing lucky about Hamilton taking pole position so many times this season in adverse conditions or in not always the best car. Today was one such case. His lead in the championship is totally merited. So far I think this has been one of his best seasons in Formula 1.

          1. Nobody said HAM didn’t deserve the PP today or some other time this season. Didn’t expect much from RAI, not anymore anyway. HAM was/is better than RAI has ever been, so it’s no big wonder to me that HAM managed to beat RAI, although his Ferrari was 0.25-0.5sec faster.

          2. @mg1982 I was responding to the idea that Hamilton has been luckier this season. Vettel had to be matching the level of Hamilton this season to be level or ahead now, and he hasn’t. Raikkonen should have won pole. That’s down to Ferrari making the mistake of signing a driver past his best, as you pointed out. These different things add up. So they have only themselves to blame, not bad luck.

  8. Drivers who can no longer beat their team-mates in the quali battle: Ocon, Vandoorne, Stroll, Palmer, Ricciardo.

    1. Bottas.

      1. Yes, that is true. Bottas can no longer beat Hamilton, but it still could turnout to be 10 – 10. Although that is very unlikely.

      2. Nope, it’s 10-5. I suppose that means it can only end 10-10 at best, and Hamilton would have more poles, so yes, you’re right. I suppose I should have said ‘match’.

        1. As noted @offdutyrockstar is technically correct, which is the best kind of correct.

  9. I predict Kimi’s first race win of the season tomorrow, Ferrari had much less deg on the long runs.

    Nevertheless, outrageous lap from Lewis. He should be happy with damage limitation tomorrow and bring it home.

    Max once again, quicker over a lap than DR.

    Bottas starting to look like more of a Koveleinen / Post 2007 Raikkonen than a Hakkinen.

    Feel very sorry for Seb and nothing but respect for the way he thanked his mechanics for the fast engine swap. Can’t help but think he would have put it on pole and even as a Hamilton supporter, I wanted to see that as the sour taste of a championship decided through reliability is still fresh from 2016, nobody wants that. Unfortunately this problem is only going to get worse with the asphyxiating PU restrictions, as fans we aren’t seeing anything tangible from it apart from reduced competition!

    1. I really wish we still had T cars.

    2. @offdutyrockstar, it’s not exactly as if previous years in F1 were that more competitive (for example, until Brawn won the WCC in 2009, the same four teams had won the WCC since 1979).

  10. C’mon my nokia 3310 theory is going down the drain.

  11. Big shout out to Vandoorne! Without the aero upgrades that ALO does have no less.

    1. Hear, hear. Stoffel is looking more and more confident and finally showing what he can do now that the car is performing. And speaking of performance … Am I alone in thinking McLaren have blown up the Honda contract just a bit too soon? They seem to be getting better now. (Although we’ll probably get news of a problem and grid drop around … now.)

  12. I have to admit, Hamilton is a due a DNF at some point, I just don’t see him finishing the entire season without a retirement, and the last time Vettel started at the back he came through to finish P5 (last year Singapore), so even if podium is not gonna happen, expect a great race by him tomorrow.

    1. He’s not due anything, he took the brunt of all Mercedes engined cars reliability last season.

    2. @arobbo Agree with @offdutyrockstar that Hamilton’s not due anything, but at the same time, this was a DNF for him last year, the circuit is tough on engines, so I’m not sure why so many people think the race and the championship is assured with Vettel starting at the back. A lot could go wrong still.

  13. Didn’t watch the FP2 and FP3, also didn’t read the news, but they changed VET engine with a new-spec engine and the new-spec engine broke down? If so, not good news for the remaining races.

    1. They did a 4 hour installation in 2. And a new spec ICE with old spec Turbo to avoid penalty, so it’s not that simple.

    2. I thought it was the turbo that went, not the ICE

  14. Tough luck, Sebastian.

  15. It’s nice to see Gasly so close to Sainz. Also Riccardo very close to Verstapen. On the other side of the table, Wherlein put half a second on Ericsson, Vandorme ahead of Alonso by a good margin and Stroll doens’t seen capable of getting near Massa even on Massa did just an average performance.

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