On a day when Red Bull felt it had never been further from to podium, the former star pupil of its driving academy was claiming his first victory wearing Ferrari’s famous red overalls.
Red Bull Racing suffered yet another demoralising day at the track after being pummelled into the lower order of the top ten in Malaysia.
Williams found itself in a race of its own at the Malaysian Grand Prix, with Valtteri Bottas leading Felipe Massa over the line in fifth and sixth.
Sebastian Vettel has taken an emphatic first victory for Scuderia Ferrari, shattering the Mercedes stranglehold on the championship in the process.
Daniel Ricciardo has credited his superb fourth place in qualifying in Malaysia on Saturday to the weather and a step backwards in engine configuration in equal measure.
McLaren received a boost to its morale after an improved qualifying performance at the Malaysian Grand Prix that saw its deficit to Mercedes slashed by more than 1.5 seconds.
Mercedes is keeping cool after the testing heat of Malaysian Grand Prix qualifying denied it its tenth consecutive front row lockout, with Hamilton on pole but ROsberg half a second back in P3.
Lewis Hamilton has taken his 40th career pole position in Malaysia during a rain-affected qualifying session, just one-tenth ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
Nico Rosberg turned the tables on Lewis Hamilton in final practice on Saturday morning, with Rosberg leading a Mercedes one-two just five-tenths up the road from Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.
Scuderia Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost has confirmed he would be interested in his squad being acquired by Renault as the natural next step in its development.
Daniel Ricciardo remained upbeat with tweaks made to his Renault power unit despite another day of troubled running.
Lewis Hamilton had a somewhat disappointing day in Malaysia during Friday practice, with telemetry problems and engine niggles curtailing his running.
Williams believes it has lost the pace edge over Mercedes it had enjoyed for more than a year as it approaches the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend.
Sergio Perez is staying optimistic in his fifth year in Formula One despite Force India's shaky start to its 2015 campaign.
Fernando Alonso's return to the Formula One paddock has only created more questions than answers as uncertainty continues to swirl his pre-season testing accident.