Lewis Hamilton capitalises on Ferrari disaster in Singapore

Ruben Hill
September 19, 2017

Vettel's getaway was routine but he soon found Verstappen closing in on him on the inside, and the Ferrari driver moved across to cover the Red Bull, apparently unaware Raikkonen was on the other side of the No.33 vehicle and next to the pit wall.

Vettel made it through the first corner without getting collected by the other cars involved, but he then crashed out of the lead when he spun on the run out of Turn 3.

Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo prevented a Mercedes 1-2 by finishing ahead of Valtteri Bottas, who was third.

He increased his lead over title rival Sebastian Vettel from three to 28 points with six races left - the German was sent crashing out within seconds of the start following a spectacular crash involving the two Ferraris and the Red Bull of Max Verstappen.

"We had a couple of little issues, had to manage the vehicle in certain situations with the gearbox", he said.

Although Hamilton was the beneficiary of an accident that knocked out his title rival Vettel, the Mercedes man still had to get his vehicle safely home in wet conditions.

Carlos Sainz and Sergio Perez were the other big gainers in the Toro Rosso and Force India respectively.

Raikkonen ploughed into Red Bull's Max Verstappen on the first corner, taking both cars out of the race and also dealing a heavy hit to Fernando Alonso's McLaren.

The Mercedes driver looks set for a fourth world title after claiming victory in Singapore
The Mercedes driver looks set for a fourth world title after claiming victory in Singapore

Playing perfectly into Ricciardo's hands, Verstappen, starting alongside Vettel on the front row, found himself sandwiched between the two Ferrari cars in a messy collision that took all three drivers out of the race.

"I watched the chaos unfold in front of me".

"It was probably a good thing I had a bad start, otherwise I would have got caught up in it". "It gave me time to see what would happen".

"I saw Max and then next thing I see is Kimi hitting the side of me and Max somewhere there", said Vettel, who remains optimistic about his title hopes.

This year's Singapore Grand Prix looks set to be a fine balance between a one-stop and a two-stop strategy. Alonso also continued despite a large chunk of his sidepod and floor missing, but he retired on lap eight after McLaren lost all telemetry from the auto.

Marcus Ericsson stalled his Sauber on lap 39, bringing the safety auto out again - which irritated Hamilton.

But Hamilton shot off after the restart to maintain the gap from Ricciardo and as he finally took the checkered flag, the grandstand came to its feet and fireworks lit up the night sky.

Safety cars often contribute to the length of the Singapore Grand Prix - there still has not been a Grand Prix in Singapore where the safety auto has not had to emerge from the pits.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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