The Malaysian Grand Prix delivered a truly shocking upset result at the end of nearly three hours that included a lengthy red flag delay because of a spectacular electrical storm that hit the race and flooded the Sepang International Circuit just six laps in.
Ferrari's pit board hailed Fernando Alonso's victory as "magnifico" while Sauber were overjoyed and in tears to see Sergio Perez pick up second place ahead of Lewis Hamilton.
McLaren's Hamilton and Jenson Button had leading when the race was stopped, but in the confusion of what to do about race and tyre strategy as the rain got underway and the track quickly started to dry up, they suffered a series of reversals which included a mistimed and slow pit stop for Hamilton and a collision for Button into the rear of Narain Karthikeyan which hit their race chances.
It left Sauber's Sergio Perez briefly in the lead of the race - the first Mexican to lead a Grand Prix since Pedro Rodríguez led the Dutch Grand Prix in 1971. He was overtaken by Fernando Alonso in the Ferrari, who then held the lead through to the finish of the race despite Perez picking up the pace again in the latter stages of the Grand Prix and coming close to claiming a famous victory until he ran wide in the penultimate corner six laps from the end.
Lewis Hamilton held on to third place ahead of Red Bull's Mark Webber, but Sebastian Vettel came a cropped after cutting his left rear tyre on the front wing of Narain Karthikeyan's HRT late in the race. Vettel was ultimately ordered to pull over and park the car on the final lap.
Kimi Raikkonen claimed fifth place ahead of Bruno Senna, who finally delivered the points that Pastor Maldonado looked set to win in Australia last week. Maldonado himself was also set to finish in the points before suffering a late engine blow up.
Alonso rains on McLaren parade as Perez auditions
Race times and positions:
Malaysian Grand Prix, Sepang - Race results