Vitaly Petrov gave a stellar performance to finish on the last step of the podium. His two stops to Alonso’s three, ensured he ended up with just enough time over the Ferrari to take third place. Alonso had to recover from a bad start and charged back from ninth to fourth to finish one up on his starting position. Vitaly soaked up the pressure from Alonso brilliantly, in the closing stages of the race to finish just over a second ahead of him.
Webber finished a disappointing fifth place and a gamble onto the hard tyres in the first round of pitstops did not seem to work as planned.
Jenson Button with a go-karting style overtaking maneuver, had to undergo a drive through penalty, for illegally overtaking Massa by cutting the quick Turn 12 in an early fight.
Sergio Perez with a brilliant debut finished a strong seventh with teammate Kobayashi just behind in eighth, were both sadly disqualified after post race scrutiny, due to a technical infringement relating to the rear wing of the Sauber. The teams technical head, James Key, has said that the disqualifications are going to be appealed as the cars “certainly have not gained a performance advantage” because of the technical breach.
As a result of the disqualifications, Massa moved upto seventh followed by Buemi, Sutil and Di Resta. Di Resta has consequently scored a point on his debut and will be hoping for his luck to continue.
Alguersuari, Heidfeld, Trulli, Ambrosio and Glock brought up the rear end of the field, with rookie Ambrosio finishing ahead of his more experienced team mate Timo Glock.
The Mercedes team are ruing their ugly run of luck, with both the drivers being shunted and suffering critical damage to their cars. Schumacher was hit from behind by Alguersuari on the first lap and Rosberg had the side of his car smashed into by an overzealous Barrichello who seemed to have been distracted by his use of KERS while trying to catch Nico in front.
Pastor Maldonado did not have a fun debut with him being the first retirement of the race. His car stopped on track. Kovalinen had to retire with a water leak on his Lotus.
The first race of the year has brought some vindication to the DRS, which has proved to be very successful at some points in the race, while at some other times it has proved ineffective. But the positive is that it does bring the cars closer together. Malaysia and China hold quite some promise and 2 weeks to go seems too long a wait.