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Heavy rain to change Malaysian GP race dynamics

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Lewis Hamilton was thrilled to come out on top in a rain-interrupted qualifying session for the Malaysia Grand Prix.

Also, Formula 1 looks to be heading into its first wet race of the season. Sunday forecast for Sepang indicates a high probability of rain and afternoon storms, even though the weather is notoriously difficult to predict in Kuala Lumpur.

Easier to predict, however, is that if it does rain at Sepang, it is usually in the afternoon and almost always very heavy.

Other vital thing, early race start time to reduce the risk of rain stoppage – this year’s race will start at 3pm, with sunset due at around 7:20pm.

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In January, Pirelli chief Paul Hembery renewed his call for specific rain-tyre testing.

“We always say that we should thoroughly test rain tyres before the start of the season at least once, preferably on a track that can be completely drenched, such as Le Castellet or Fiorano,” he is quoted by Speed Week.

Hembery said the tests would not only help Pirelli perfect its wet weather designs, but also allow the drivers to get used to the tyres.

Ahead of 2015, the rain tests did not take place.

That is also despite the fact that, after Jules Bianchi’s horror crash at wet Suzuka late last year, the governing FIA urged the sport to do more rain-tyre testing.

“It is recommended that provision is made for the tyre supplier to develop and adequately test wet weather tyres between each F1 season, such that it is able to supply the latest developments to the first event,” the FIA said in its official report on Bianchi’s crash.

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