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Last Updated: Sunday, 19 March 2006, 06:05 GMT
Malaysian GP as it happened
Final positions:

1 Fisichella (Renault)

2 Alonso (Renault)

3 Button (Honda)

4 Montoya (McLaren)

5 Massa (Ferrari)

6 M Schumacher (Ferrari)

7 Villeneuve (BMW Sauber)


Latest updates (all times GMT):

Lap 56: Fisichella takes the chequered flag, ahead of Renault team-mate Alonso in second and Honda's Button in third. It is the Italian's third Grand Prix victory.

Lap 55: Ferrari team-mates Massa and M Schumacher are battling for fifth.

Lap 54: R Schumacher is closing in on Villeneuve and could take seventh.

Lap 53: It looks like being Fisichella, Alonso and Button on the podium. Button is lapping a second faster than the Renaults, but will not catch them.

Lap 51: Fisichella is holding his lead over team-mate Alonso and what was shaping up to be a thrilling finish has turned into a procession.

Lap 49: Heidfeld, who had been in fifth, is out after what looks like engine failure.

Lap 48: A message has clearly gone out to Alonso to hold back. It looks like Fisichella's race.

Lap 47: M Schumacher pits and comes out in seventh. Fisichella's lead is down to 8.7 seconds.

Lap 45: Fisichella leads Alonso by 9.9 seconds and the Spaniard is reeling his team-mate in.

Lap 44: Alonso and Button pit but Alonso comes out ahead. M Schumacher is up into fourth, while team-mate Massa, who started back in 21st, in seventh.

Lap 43: Montoya comes into the pits and exits in fifth. Button is up to third.

Lap 41: Button is tucked up behind Montoya in third, but should be on for a podium finish as Montoya has to pit again.

Lap 40: Alonso, who is expected to pit in four laps, leads Fisichella by 7.8 seconds. Fisichella would appear to be in the box seat.

Lap 38: Button and Alonso hit traffic, which is good news for Fisichella, who cut through the back-markers like butter. Fisichella pits, as does Button. Fisichella comes out in second, Button drops back to third.

Lap 36: Barrichello, who is having a miserable race, gets a stop-go penalty for speeding in the pit-lane.

Lap 35: The gap between Button and Alonso drops to below four seconds.

Lap 34: Button is 10 seconds behind Fisichella. Alonso is preparing to enter the pits once again, which should be in four or five laps.

Lap 33: Fisichella has responded to the Alonso threat and is now lapping as quick as his team-mate. Button is also keeping pace.

Lap 32: The gap between Button and Alonso is now down to just over four seconds. The Ferraris are struggling to make any sort of impact.

Lap 31: Fisichella leads Alonso, in third, by 15 seconds, but his team inform him that he is being reeled in.

Lap 30: Massa pits for the first time. He comes out in eighth.

Lap 28: Sato is having a storming race in his four-year-old Super Aguri. He is 14th, lapping significantly quicker than team-mate Ide and ahead of Liuzzi and Monteiro.

Lap 26: Alonso pits, and will probably have to do so again. He comes out in third, but it is surprising they did not add more fuel.

Lap 25: Montoya and M Schumacher pit. Button moves up to third, Massa is up to fifth.

Lap 23: Montoya in third is 11 seconds behind Alonso. Barrichello, in ninth, is lapping at 1.5 seconds a lap slower than team-mate Button.

Lap 21: Alonso's lead over Fisichella is more than five seconds. There are a few spots of rain in the air.

Lap 19: Button's lead over Alonso is 14 seconds but he pits at the end of the lap. The Briton comes out in fourth, just behind Montoya.

Lap 17: Fisichella comes in for his first pit-stop and exits in third. Button now leads.

Lap 16: Villeneuve passes Trulli to move into seventh. Trulli is proving a little bit of a soft touch. Webber is out with what looks like engine failure.

Lap 15: Webber pits in 7.8 seconds. Coulthard is out of the Grand Prix, it has been confirmed.

Lap 14: M Schumacher is climbing all over the back of Trulli and forces his way through into seventh. Easy pickings for Schumacher.

Lap 13: Fisichella puts in a new fastest lap of 1:35.488 and his lead over Button is now almost five seconds. Montoya is 21 seconds adrift of Fisichella.

Lap 10: Alonso, heavily-laden with fuel, is being harried by Webber for third. M Schumacher manages to get past Villeneuve and move into eighth.

Lap 9: Fisichella leads Button by almost four seconds.

Lap 8: Alonso is currently lapping 1.3 seconds slower than his Renault team-mate Fisichella, a result of the extra fuel he is carrying.

Lap 7: Fisichella is 3.4 seconds ahead of Button while Rosberg is beginning to catch Montoya. However, Rosberg blows an engine and is out.

Lap 4: Rosberg passes Heidfeld. Michael Schumacher is making little impression at the moment and is back in 10th.

Lap 2: Klien, who appeared to tag Raikkonen before the Finn's exit, also limps off and the Red Bull mechanics are frantically trying to fix his car.

Lap 1: Alonso moves up to third on the first turn. Raikkonen goes off onto the gravel and is out. His right rear suspension failed on turn four.

0700: The parade lap gets under way. The track temperature is 36C and rising.

0655: It has emerged that Fernando Alonso was carrying a lot more fuel than he wanted in the final session of qualifying. He was two seconds off the pace, but is expected to pit late as a result.

0652: Eight teams (all except Ferrari and Red Bull) are set to protest about Ferrari's front wing, which they allege is a flexible device that would give it a performance advantage.

0640: There are a few spots of rain in Sepang, but the crowds are beginning to swell. The humidity is stifling and light showers are forecast for the closing stages of the race.

0630: The pit lane opens and the cars head out of garages to form up on the dummy grid.

0620: With 40 minutes to go before the start of the race, the air temperature is 37C. It is dry but overcast, and the humidity is 42%.

Jenson Button looks to have a strong chance of winning his first Grand Prix after qualifying second in Malaysia, behind only Renault's Giancarlo Fisichella.

The men who dominated the first race of the season in Bahrain last weekend, world champion Fernando Alonso and Michael Schumacher, both start well down the grid.

Alonso's Renault is seventh on the grid after a poor performance in Saturday's qualifying session, while Schumacher is down in 14th in his Ferrari - he was penalised 10 grid places for an engine change.

Instead, Williams drivers Nico Rosberg and Mark Webber start on the second row - a particularly impressive performance from Rosberg in only his second Grand Prix.

The McLarens of Juan Pablo Montoya and Kimi Raikkonen are fifth and sixth on the grid.

The intense tropical heat in Malaysia is bound to be a factor, both on the drivers and the durability of their tyres and cars.




SEE ALSO
Fisichella beats Button to pole
18 Mar 06 |  Formula One


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