Commanding Hamilton wins damp Singapore GP
Lewis Hamilton won a Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix punctuated by safety cars and an opening lap crash that accounted for both Ferraris and Max Verstappen.
Starting fifth, Hamilton inherited the lead following the early clash before controlling the race with ease to win from Daniel Ricciardo and Valtteri Bottas.
It also accounted for Fernando Alonso, though the McLaren driver carried on for a number of laps before the damage proved too great for the McLaren to continue.
A rain shower doused the Marina Bay circuit minutes before the race began, the first time in the event’s 10-year history the night race had been held in wet conditions.
Raikkonen made a lightning start to draw alongside the two front row starters, Verstappen cramped for room between the two Ferraris before the trio finally made contact.
A secondary impact saw Raikkonen again make contact with Verstappen, with Alonso also involved as he was caught on the outside of the first corner.
Vettel lasted only two corners further before he collided with the barrier and was forced out.
The incident saw Hamilton promoted to the race lead, the Mercedes driver then proved untouchable throughout the race from that point.
Ricciardo made slight inroads as the field moved to slick tyres, but was ultimately unable to do better than second after a lonely race for the Australian, his third successive second place finish and fourth consecutive podium at Marina Bay.
A late safety car threatened to change the order after Marcus Ercisson spun out of the race, however Hamilton quickly reasserted his authority over the race at the restart to quickly re-establish his advantage over the Red Bull.
Completing the podium was Bottas, while high attrition saw a number of traditional midfield runners scored good points.
Toro Rosso benefitted with Carlos Sainz in fourth, Sergio Perez next for Force India and Jolyon Palmer who scored his first points of the season for Renault.
With Vettel out on the opening lap, his first retirement of 2017, victory for Hamilton extended his championship advantage to 28 points.
The next round of the Formula 1 world championship is at Sepang in Malaysia in a fortnight.
Results: Singapore Grand Prix
|2||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||58||+4.507|
|4||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||58||+22.822|
|5||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||58||+25.359|
|10||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||58||+44.795|
|12||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber/Ferrari||56||+2 laps|
|DNF||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||10|
|DNF||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||0|