Hamilton opens up huge title lead in Singapore after Ferrari wreck Vettel's race

Sunday, 16 september 2018, 10:05 , by Matthew Scott

Lewis Hamilton cruised to victory at the Singapore Grand Prix as Ferrari's strategy failed Sebastian Vettel to open up a 40-point gap at the top of the drivers' standings. Ferrari appeared to mishear a radio transmission from Hamilton, which may have influenced an early pitstop, which cost Vettel track position.

Vettel simmered after qualifying on Saturday, seemingly upset with his team's efforts which had left him six tenths off a stunning Hamilton lap he said was "not unbeatable".

The German got off to a good start on Sunday, passing Max Verstappen for second place before a safety car was called when Esteban Ocon was driven into the wall by team-mate Sergio Perez on what could be his final race for Force India.

However, Vettel's good work was undone when brought into the pits on lap 14 for ultrasoft tyres which would struggle to make it to the end of the race.

He lost crucial time behind Perez and Red Bull managed to pit and send Verstappen out ahead of Vettel – the Dutchman and Hamilton having pitted for soft tyres which could run to the end of the race.

Needing to get 28 seconds ahead of his rivals for another stop, Vettel could not even muster an attempt to get beyond them and settled for a podium finish in a race he likely needed to win.

Save for Verstappen almost running into the rear of Hamilton when they were held up under blue flags by a quarrel between Romain Grosjean and Sergey Sirotkin, the reigning champion was rarely challenged and his seventh win of 2018 will surely now put a fifth world title to the forefront of his thoughts.

The top six finished in the order they started with action coming further down the field – particularly involving Sirotkin.

Having collided with Ocon on lap one, Perez grew frustrated behind the tough-defending Sirotkin and bizarrely speared into the Williams after passing him.

Perez took a drive-through penalty, but Sirotkin was not done yet, driving Brendon Hartley off the road to earn a penalty of his own and possibly a growing reputation for tough on-track tactics.

Free tyre choice from 11th on the grid helped Fernando Alonso take a simple seventh-place finish, with Carlos Sainz tucking in behind his fellow Spaniard to take eighth from 12th off the line with a similar strategy and Charles Leclerc and Nico Hulkenberg taking the remaining points-paying places.

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Comments (17)

  • Vicky Dev
    Vettel doesn't have the guts to win a championship with a car which is similar to his rival car....he won four championship with red bull as Christian horner have him a car which was beyond the reach of other teams.....I am a die hard fan of Ferrari....I don't care which driver wins the championship I just Ferrari to be the number one in the drivers and constructors championship.....my line hope is now Charles Lecher....next season after the first five races vettel will be the wing man on Charles
  • Adrian Tanase
    let's face it, even if vettel would have exited in front of perez, he could not finish in second with ultrasoft tyres fitted so early, he would have made another pit stop or be overtaken by max on soft. his mistake was not having softs for the race. period.
  • Zsolt Császár
    no way Lewis has made a faultless perfect lap and theyve just simply got beaten in qualify and Lewis has made it to bring it home thats all get over with it
  • Nigel Rose
    It’s been frustrating to watch ... again but I think Ferrari’s WDC is gone once again. If they can get the Constructors then it’s a good result
  • Tiago Almeida
    I have given up at this point lol. Shitty hamilton will have another championship at the end of this season and he can thank ferrari for that.
  • Ina Zeeman
    Can someone tell Hamilton to leave his hair alone? Or give him a comb and mirror?
  • Robert DeCastro
    Blue collar Ferrari vs. White Collar Merc...F1 is sophisticated sport.
  • Julian Bastiani
    Mercedes have a faster car this second half. Plus all the constant mistakes from Ferrari.
  • Sam James
    Phuck face Vettel is not good enough as a driver. Ferrari should hire Hamilton
  • Don Garner
    .......Mauricio Arrivederci'...........bye bye.
  • Kenneth Petrie
    Ferrari and Vettel have made too many mistakes.
  • Nikos Koytsopoylos
    ??? ? hami ??? hami!!!!
  • Boris Boomington
    Mercedes has earned it.
  • Allison Everard Drozdzewski

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