Singapore a thing of the past as Rosberg aims to hammer home advantage


Nico Rosberg has no intention of dwelling on one of the greatest weekends of his Formula One career in Singapore last time out as he looks to keep his momentum going at the Malaysia Grand Prix.

The German was flawless at the Marina Bay Circuit last time out, finishing top in qualifying before securing a pole-to-flag victory for his third consecutive Formula One win.

Rosberg subsequently regained the lead in the drivers' standings from team-mate and defending champion Lewis Hamilton, who at one stage had a 19-point lead.

Hamilton - who is now eight points behind Rosberg - has spoken of the need to improve if he is to win a third consecutive title, while Ferrari will aim to repeat their 2015 heroics when Sebastian Vettel finished on top in Malaysia.

Jenson Button is also celebrating a landmark race at Sepang and a hugely revamped track coupled with unpredictable weather means there should be plenty of thrills and spills over the weekend.


Rosberg's victory in Singapore was his eighth of the season and no driver has failed to win the world title having racked up that many chequered flags.

The drivers' title has thus far proved elusive for Rosberg and he is taking nothing granted despite his near-flawless performance last time out.

"I don't need to take anything from the Singapore weekend," he said. "It was a great result, great weekend, so I'm very happy about that, but now it's in the past. 

"Now I'm here in Sepang and ready to go. Of course I believe that I have a great chance to win here as well. I'm just going to try to go for that."


Hamilton was well and truly beaten by Rosberg in Singapore, although a hydraulics problem in practice went some way to explaining his lack of pace.

The Briton believes he is battling with more car trouble this season than he has previously at Mercedes, but recognises the need to improve.

"[I] just [have to] drive better, I guess," he said. "More time on track. Hopefully we won't have any problems this weekend.

"This year I have had a lot more problems than in any of the other battles I have had in the championship."


Vettel was hugely impressive in Singapore and had he not sustained a roll-bar failure in qualifying that saw him start from the back of the grid, the German would have had strong claims for victory.

His pace was still good enough to earn him fifth place and he returns to Sepang where he won for the first time in Ferrari red in 2015.

Vettel has cumulatively led the Malaysia GP longer than any other current driver, while no team can better Ferrari's seven victories.

"There's always a chance to win," Vettel said. "There's always a lot of things that could happen on Sunday afternoon and that's ultimately why we are here. That's my conviction and that's my feeling whenever I'm standing on the grid."


Jenson Button has had a distinguished Formula One career, including winning the drivers' title in 2009.

The McLaren driver will rack up a landmark 300th race this weekend and Button had some words of advice to those on the grid hoping to emulate his achievement.

"There have been lots of ups and downs, as every career will have," he said. "The important thing is that you stay on top of those bad times and you enjoy the good times as much as you can, because you never know how long they are going to last.

"If any of these guys can achieve it around me, fair play to them, because it's a long time doing the same thing."


Sepang has been a fixture of the F1 calendar since 1999, but significant renovation work has been undertaken since the 2015 race.

The 5.5 kilometre track has been resurfaced, leading to a potentially slippier surface. There have also been changes to nine corners.

The track's CEO, Razlan Razali, stated that the changes to Sepang will make drivers feel like they are taking on the circuit for the first time.


The weather for the Malaysia GP is historically unpredictable and it promises to be the same this weekend. Showers are forecast over all three days, although the timing of the rain is harder to predict. But with showers forecast just before qualifying and Sunday's race it could be an interesting weekend.


The soft tyres are the most popular choice in Malaysia, with teams varying from between six and eight sets of the yellow-marked tyres.

Hamilton and Rosberg have slight variations in their hard and medium selections with the former taking a three-three split and the latter having two hard to four medium.

The Ferraris, too, notice a small difference in strategy. Raikkonen takes three each of the hard and medium, while Vettel has two hard to four medium.