F1: Lewis Hamilton wins Singapore GP after Sebastian Vettel crashes out – as it happened
Lewis Hamilton got lucky when Sebastian Vettel, Kimi Raikonnen and Max Verstappen crashed out on the first lap, but drove brilliantly thereafter to extend his lead at the top of the driver standings to a huge 28 points
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LEWIS HAMILTON WINS THE SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX, EXTENDING HIS LEAD AT THE TOP OF THE DRIVERS CHAMPIONSHIP to 28 points
A brilliant performance. He was lucky others made a mess at the start, but like the great that he is, he absolutely exploited the situation. The grandstand stand, here he comes, and the fireworks go! What a win! That’s three in a row since the summer break!
To go: 3.07 At no point since going in front has Hamilton been in trouble. That’s pretty remarkable, given the safety cars situation, all the more so given what looked to be the difference between the cars in qualifying.
To go: 5.05 Bottas is 2.305 behind Ricciardo; he’s not going to deal with that now. Hamilton leads by 4.346.
To go: 6.17 Sainz is holding off Perez for fourth – if he can close it out, that’ll be his best ever finish, and Toro Rosso’s best on this circuit.
To go: 7.26 I say this advisedly, but I think we’ve pretty much seen what’s what here. The positions now are the positions at the end.
To go: 9.12 Kevin Magnussen is out, so we’ve now got 12 drivers left in the race.
To go: 9.56 Hamilton is cruising; he’ll soon be 28 points clear in the drivers championship.
To go: 10.51
To go: 13.35 It’s beginning to look like Hulkenberg is done; and done he is indeed, in the pit for good. That elusive first podium still eludes him.
To go: 14.38 Hamilton leads by 2.773. In all the fuss, it shouldn’t be forgotten what a great drive this is from him.
To go: 16.07
To go: 18.48 Turns out Hamilton was ordered to take his foot off the gas to back the field up into Ricciardo and not give anyone a free stop if the safety car came back out, but Hamilton didn’t like it, said it wasn’t “comfortable”, so it back to putting it in.
To go: 19.56 Hamilton is stretching again, and Ricciardo is actually now closer to Bottas. It’s 2.251 between 1 and 2.
To go: 20.41 As I was saying! Hamilton’s gap has basically gone on that last lap! Was it a single error, or does he have a problem?
To go: 21.56 Surely this is now over, unless Hamilton has an accident. No number of safety cars will let Ricciardo catch him.
To go: 23.23 Hamilton is still going away. He’s so comfortable in the car and looks so different to practice. I think we might call that genius.
To go: 24.21 I should say, we’re now on counting down to the finish, rather than up.
To go: 24.47 Hamilton is putting it in here, now 2.179 ahead.
Lap 42/61 Off they go again, and Hamilton is increasing his lead again as they zig-zag to get heat into their tyres! The lead is 1.006….
Lap 41/61 The circuit’s nice and dry now, and Red Bull say they’ve noticed a few issues, as well as conceding that Hamilton looks capable of managing even the restricted gap.
Lap 40/61 Verstappen says that he got away better than Vettel, who he thinks didn’t see Raikkonen. “I couldn’t get out of that sandwich,” he says, after chiding Vettel.
Lap 39/61 Hulkenberg is back out and in 10th. Behind Hamilton, it’s Ricciardo, Bottas, Sainz, Perez, Palmer, Vandoorne.
Lap 39/61 Hulkenberg has a pressure issue and is in the pits. His first podium is diddled, basically.
Lap 38/61 Ericsson has driven into the wall and the safety car is out! Now we’re’ talking! Hamilton stays out, but his lead is his lead no longer!
Lap 38/61 Hamilton’s lead is now at 10.339. Raikkonen says there was nothing he could’ve done about the crash, and the conditions were not to blame.
Lap 37/61 “You’re just a passenger in the car,” says Alonso of his demise. He also reckons he was taking out Hamilton, so might well be in the lead now. Or not, obviously.
Lap 36/61 Just when it looks like Ricciardo is making some kind of impression, Hamilton puts in his fastest lap. Meanwhile, Sainz’s team tell him about a potential battery issue; he tells them to “shut up”.
Lap 34/61 Hamilton’s lead is up to 9.343 seconds. Ricciardo, Bottas, Hulkenberg, Sainz and Perez come next. Those last two are battling hard for the ascendancy.
Lap 33/61 Ricciardo sets the fastest lap, 0.2 faster than Hamilton. Famine for thought for the race leader.
Lap 32/61 Perez, in sixth, has a shy at Sainz, but Sainz finds the grip and shuts him out.
Lap 31/61 So the pits are did and Hamilton is 8.666 ahead. It’s hard to see how Ricciardo closes that up, let alone how he gets past thereafter. If he stays safe, he’ll win.
Lap 30/61 Vandoorne has a shy as Palmer, takes him on the inside, and Palmer shuts the do!
Lap 30/61 Hamilton comes in, the stop is a bazzer, slicks are applied, and back out he comes into the lead. Ricciardo is back into second, Palmer stops. Bottas is third, then Hulkenberg, Sainz, Perez, Palmer and Vandoorne.
Lap 29/61 A rash of stopping. Sainz is on supersoft now, but the rest are all on slicks. Palmer is second now, Ricciardo third, then Bottas, Hulkenberg and Sainz.
Lap 29/61 Hamilton is lapping six seconds faster then Magnussen on his new tyres, and Ricciardo pits! Will that help? Will it encourage Hamilton to pit?
Lap 28/61 “Track’s still greasy, these tyres still doing good,” Hamilton tells his team. I believe him.
Lap 27/61 Surely Ricciardo will have to take the tyre gamble, because he’s just making no impression. Or perhaps he’ll consider second a decent evening’s work and be done.
Lap 26/61 Still Hamilton goes away. Massa comes in, and is now in 14th. Magnussen, 16th, is quicker than Grossjean his team-mate, but slower than Hamilton.
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