Singapore Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton extends championship lead under lights
Lewis Hamilton won the Singapore Grand Prix for Mercedes as he beat Max Verstappen and Sebastian Vettel in the F1 calendar's famous night race.
WHERE THE RACE WAS WON
In qualifying yesterday. Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes were wary of Ferrari's straight-line speed going into this race weekend, and that brilliant lap that secured him pole position was just a touch unexpected, particularly after last year's P5 start.
But the Brit kept clear of the ever-tricky Max Verstappen at the start and maintained his advantage.
- Hamilton wins in Singapore to open up big championship lead
- Hamilton relieved to win 'longest race of my life'
- Vettel: 'The way we raced, we didn't have a chance'
Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel got past the young Dutchman just as the safety car came out on the opening lap, but couldn't stay there as Red Bull pulled off a great pitstop to get their man back out on track millimetres ahead of the German.
Five stars out of five. An excellent qualifying session, and an excellent race, extending his lead in the championship standings to 40 points with just half a dozen races left.
PIT RADIO EXCHANGE OF THE DAY
Verstappen was twitchy from the off after Vettel's swing past, informing his team, "The car feels really good!" They calmed him down by reiterating, "It's a long race," - that is, there would be plenty of time to make a push for that P2. As it turned out, they were right to dampen down his impatience - and it was the team who won him second place with that speedy stop.
MOVE OF THE RACE
Valtteri Bottas has been unlucky as well as overshadowed at Mercedes this year, but his sound defensive driving ten laps from the end held off the threats of the always-dangerous Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari and Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo.
Charles Leclerc had a disappointing weekend up as far as race day, and then managed to impress in his Sauber. He was watchful, waiting for his opportunity, and struck beautifully to get past Pierre Gasly's Toro Rosso.
TACTICAL MASTERSTROKE OF THE DAY
McLaren's Fernando Alonso's early use of ultrasoft tyres got him gradually moving up and closing in on Haas's Romain Grosjean - and eventually secured him both the fastest lap on track and then a wonderful P7 as he continues to revel in his F1 swansong.
Shout-out to Carlos Sainz of Renault, who's having a busy few weeks, heading over to McLaren for next season, and turning in a very credible P8 today - one place behind the man he's going to replace next year.
FACEPALM OF THE WEEKEND
Force India might have a new name but they returned to their old ways in the first lap.
Esteban Ocon ran into a wall after a collision with his team-mate Sergio Perez - who also smacked into Sergey Sirotkin later on. Not good.
Singapore is always good value for a celebrity or two - such as actress Michelle Yeoh.
There were music stars on stage all weekend, including the Killers, Liam Gallagher, and Simply Red.