In an explosive and quite extraordinary Malaysian Grand Prix, Sebastian Vettel brazenly disobeyed team orders to win the race from his Red Bull teammate Mark Webber. The Australian had led after the final round of pit stops and the drivers were instructed to hold position until the end of the race, but Vettel passed Webber after the tensest of tussles with 13 laps remaining. Within Red Bull, the fallout from the duel was acrimonious and immediate.
“I want to say sorry to Mark,” the German told reporters, having been rebuked by team boss Christian Horner on the radio as they dueled on the track. “This is silly Seb, come on,” Horner warned.
Lewis Hamilton scored his first podium finish for Mercedes, coming home third, while the Mercedes teammates had their own contretemps over team orders, with Nico Rosberg pleading to be set free to try and chase down the two Red Bulls. Ross Brawn vetoed that idea in order to save tires and bring the cars home, leading Hamilton to say that “If I’m honest, I feel Nico should be standing here. He had better pace throughout the race.” Lewis added “Hats off to Nico, he was the driver of the day for me.”