One point at October 9th’s Japanese Grand Prix is all Sebastian Vettel needs to secure his second consecutive world championship. Vettel had no problem driving away to victory at the Singapore Grand Prix today, sometimes increasing the gap to second place by over a second per lap…until a safety car.
The Singapore GP has never been run without a safety car period, and it looked to be inevitable after a fight for position between Nico Rosberg and Sergio Perez. Rosberg passed Perez, and his teammate Michael Schumacher was right on the back of the Sauber, before getting slightly airborne and crashing into a wall.
Vettel was able to take off again after the safety car period ended, and cruised away. He only came somewhat close to losing his lead while passing through some traffic, where his gap to second place Jenson Button dropped to under 4 seconds. Vettel lapped all the way up to 7th place before the finish.
Of course, he also came somewhat close to losing everything when he was nearly hit by Heikki Kovalainen in the pit lane.
Lewis Hamilton managed to finish fifth, despite many pit stops and a drive through penalty for a collision with Felipe Massa. Hamilton damaged his front wing and punctured one of Massa’s tires. Massa managed to finish 9th.
Mark Webber finished third after yet another horrible start. He had not one, but two awesome passes on Fernando Alonso. This is the first time at Marina Bay that Alonso has not finished on the podium, instead coming in fourth.
Force India had an excellent race with both cars finishing in the points. Paul di Resta finished 6th and Adrian Sutil in 8th.
Jaime Alguersuari put his car into a wall with two laps remaining. It was an awkward spot, which would have required a safety car had it not been towards the end.
Also managing to retire before the end: Timo Glock, who managed to pull his car off to one of the side roads, and Jarno Trulli, who had an engine failure.
Poor Lotus Renault has not had the best of times recently. The Team Lotus car of Heikki Kovalainen managed to split their drivers, with Bruno Senna finishing 15th and Vitaly Petrov finishing 17th. Earlier this season, LRGP was on the podium, hell, I am still waiting to remove Nick Heidfeld’s name from tenth place in the championship points, and Petrov still has 34 himself.
The Massa-Hamilton verbal battle is going to continue now, since Hamilton went in to pass Massa yesterday during qualifying. The incident today definitely won’t help that, plus the fact that Hamilton managed to finish four places ahead of the Brazilian. Well turns out it’s gotten physical. Massa shoved Hamilton while Hamilton was doing an interview and had been asked if he could see Massa’s point, according to Will Buxton.
Suzuka is going to totally be another Red Bull-dominating race as the track completely suits their cars. It would have to take a collision for Vettel to not secure the championship in two weeks. Also it is going to be an amazing weekend of racing, with the Bathurst 1000 taking place in Australia before the Japanese Grand Prix.
Final results under the cut.
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