Lewis Hamilton capitalises on Sebastian Vettel's first-lap drama in Singapore
Singapore Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton capitalises on Sebastian Vettel's first-lap drama in Singapore

Lewis Hamilton won a chaotic and rain-hit Singapore Grand Prix to extend his championship lead to 28 points over title rival Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel was involved in a dramatic first corner incident with Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull's Max Verstappen, which saw the trio all retire from the race on the opening lap. Hamilton, who started fifth on the grid, managed to avoid the carnage and took the lead as Vettel's initial crash damage resulted in him spinning out on the run to Turn 4. A replay showed fluid streaming out of Vettel's damaged sidepod after Turn 1 and it is likely it caused him to lose the rear of his car and hammer his Ferrari against the barrier. Although Vettel continued for a short distance, his team soon came on the radio to tell him to stop due to a loss of water pressure.

Through drying conditions and three safety car periods, Hamilton led a reduced field of cars until the race time limit of two hours elapsed on lap 58. Despite having his lead zeroed during at three Safety Car restarts, he held off Daniel Ricciardo in second place and crossed the finish line with a 4.5s lead over the Red Bull. Hamilton's Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas fought back from sixth on the grid to finish third, completing a strong result for the team, which now has a 102-point lead over Ferrari in the constructors' championship.

The result also has huge ramifications for the drivers' championship as Hamilton extended his lead to 28 points -- enough for him to retire from the next race and still lead the championship regardless of Vettel's result. What's more, Hamilton's victory -- his seventh of the season -- came on a track where Mercedes had struggled all weekend and Vettel was expected to win from pole position.

As the cars arrived on the grid 15 minutes ahead of the race, rain started to fall and lightning lit up the sky over Singapore. It was the first time in the Singapore Grand Prix's history that rain had hit on race day and the grid was a mix of drivers opting for intermediate and full-wet tyres.

Verstappen -- who qualified second on the grid -- made a good start, but so did Raikkonen from fourth and he was soon alongside the 19-year-old's car. 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 car and next to the pit wall.

Sandwiched between the two Ferraris, Verstappen made contact with Raikkonen, sending the Finnish driver's car into the pit wall. Raikkonen touched Vettel and lost control of his car as he collected Verstappen and Fernando Alonso in Turn 1. The incident took Verstappen and Raikkonen out on the spot, while Vettel continued with a scarred sidepod and fluid draining from the cooling systems within. 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 car.

The first corner accident led to a five-lap Safety Car period, with Hamilton leading Ricciardo and Renault's Nico Hulkenberg at the restart. Despite his struggles earlier in the weekend, Hamilton's car looked good in the wet conditions and he built a five-second buffer to Ricciardo within a handful of laps.

On lap 11 Daniil Kvyat outbraked himself at Turn 7 and buried his Toro Rosso in the wall beyond the run-off area. The stricken Toro Rosso and damaged barriers caused a second Safety Car and presented the first opportunity for a variation in strategies. The track was still too wet for slicks, but pitting for a fresh set of intermediates was a no-brainer for Ricciardo, who took on new rubber but still retained second place. Bottas moved up to third by not pitting and Carlos Sainz was elevated to fourth on the same strategy. Hulkenberg dropped to fifth by following Ricciardo's lead and switching from the full wets he started on to a set of new intermediates.

Despite the slight tyre disadvantage, Hamilton again built a lead over Ricciardo at the restart on lap 14. Kevin Magnussen was the first to brave slicks on lap 25 and within two laps the rest of the field followed suit. Mercedes played it conservative by keeping Hamilton out on intermediates a lap later than Ricciardo, but by the time he returned to the track his lead had extended to over ten seconds. Ricciardo managed to take a couple of seconds out of Hamilton in the following stint, but keen to protect his rear tyres, Hamilton was able to manage the race from the front.

One final curve ball was thrown on lap 38 when Marcus Ericsson lost the rear of his Sauber on the Anderson Bridge and clipped the barrier. Unable to carry on, Ericsson jumped out of his car and left it blocking one of the bridge's two lanes, causing a third Safety Car period of the race. Once again, Hamilton nailed the restart and built a third and final lead over Ricciardo, which he held until the chequered flag. Bottas was unable to make a serious impression on Ricciardo in second place and finished third ahead of Sainz, who retained fourth for Toro Rosso despite coming under pressure from Sergio Perez in fifth.

Jolyon Palmer took his first points of the season in sixth ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne's McLaren, which had a solid race to finish seventh ahead of Williams' Lance Stroll. Romain Grosjean took ninth ahead of Esteban Ocon's Force India in the final points paying position in tenth.

Related news

Dovizioso holds off Marquez to win Japanese Grand Prix

Dovizioso holds off Marquez to win Japanese Grand Prix

Andrea Dovizioso breathed new life into the MotoGP championship on Sunday, edging Marc Marquez in a ferocious duel to win a rain-soaked Japanese Grand Prix in Motegi.

Johann Zarco claims surprise pole in Japan, Marc Marquez third

Johann Zarco claims surprise pole in Japan, Marc Marquez third

Johann Zarco claimed a surprise pole for Yamaha Tech 3 at the Japanese Grand Prix in Motegi on Saturday as championship leader Marc Marquez grabbed a spot on the front row.

Kris Meeke wins in Spain, Sebastien Ogier closes in on title

Kris Meeke wins in Spain, Sebastien Ogier closes in on title

Britain's Kris Meeke won the Rally of Spain-Catalunya for Citroen on Sunday while reigning world champion Sebastien Ogier moved closer to a fifth successive title with second place.

Dovizioso fastest, Marquez crashes in Japan

Dovizioso fastest, Marquez crashes in Japan

Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso topped the timesheets in second practice for MotoGP's Japanese Grand Prix at Motegi, as Marc Marquez crashed late in the session.

Lewis on brink of title with Japan win, Vettel retires

Lewis on brink of title with Japan win, Vettel retires

Lewis Hamilton is on the brink of a fourth world title after extending his championship lead to 59 points with victory at the Japanese Grand Prix while title rival Sebastian Vettel retired with an early engine issue.

Lewis Hamilton romps to record-breaking pole position in Japan

Lewis Hamilton romps to record-breaking pole position in Japan

Lewis Hamilton smashed the track record at Suzuka to claim a comfortable pole position for the Japanese Grand Prix, where he will start ahead of title rival Sebastian Vettel on the front row.

Bottas sets fastest time in final practice despite crashing out

Bottas sets fastest time in final practice despite crashing out

Valtteri Bottas set the fastest time in the final practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix despite crashing out with 20 minutes remaining.

Lewis Hamilton tops wet second practice in Suzuka

Lewis Hamilton tops wet second practice in Suzuka

Lewis Hamilton set the fastest lap in a soaking wet second practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix.

Vettel fastest in opening practice session at Suzuka

Vettel fastest in opening practice session at Suzuka

Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time in the opening practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix as Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull all looked competitive over a single lap.

RELATED NEWS

Dovizioso holds off Marquez to win Japanese Grand Prix
Japanese Grand Prix

Dovizioso holds off Marquez to win Japanese Grand Prix

Andrea Dovizioso breathed new life into the MotoGP championship on Sunday, edging Marc Marquez in a ferocious duel to win a rain-soaked Japanese Grand Prix in Motegi.

Johann Zarco claims surprise pole in Japan, Marc Marquez third
Japanese Grand Prix - Qualifying

Johann Zarco claims surprise pole in Japan, Marc Marquez third

Johann Zarco claimed a surprise pole for Yamaha Tech 3 at the Japanese Grand Prix in Motegi on Saturday as championship leader Marc Marquez grabbed a spot on the front row.

Kris Meeke wins in Spain, Sebastien Ogier closes in on title
WRC Rally Spain

Kris Meeke wins in Spain, Sebastien Ogier closes in on title

Britain's Kris Meeke won the Rally of Spain-Catalunya for Citroen on Sunday while reigning world champion Sebastien Ogier moved closer to a fifth successive title with second place.

Dovizioso fastest, Marquez crashes in Japan
Japanese Grand Prix - Free Practice 2

Dovizioso fastest, Marquez crashes in Japan

Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso topped the timesheets in second practice for MotoGP's Japanese Grand Prix at Motegi, as Marc Marquez crashed late in the session.

Lewis on brink of title with Japan win, Vettel retires
Japanese Grand Prix

Lewis on brink of title with Japan win, Vettel retires

Lewis Hamilton is on the brink of a fourth world title after extending his championship lead to 59 points with victory at the Japanese Grand Prix while title rival Sebastian Vettel retired with an early engine issue.

Lewis Hamilton romps to record-breaking pole position in Japan
Japanese Grand Prix - Qualifying

Lewis Hamilton romps to record-breaking pole position in Japan

Lewis Hamilton smashed the track record at Suzuka to claim a comfortable pole position for the Japanese Grand Prix, where he will start ahead of title rival Sebastian Vettel on the front row.

Bottas sets fastest time in final practice despite crashing out
Japanese Grand Prix - Free Practice 3

Bottas sets fastest time in final practice despite crashing out

Valtteri Bottas set the fastest time in the final practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix despite crashing out with 20 minutes remaining.

Lewis Hamilton tops wet second practice in Suzuka
Japanese Grand Prix - Free Practice 2

Lewis Hamilton tops wet second practice in Suzuka

Lewis Hamilton set the fastest lap in a soaking wet second practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix.

Vettel fastest in opening practice session at Suzuka
Japanese Grand Prix - Free Practice 1

Vettel fastest in opening practice session at Suzuka

Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time in the opening practice session for the Japanese Grand Prix as Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull all looked competitive over a single lap.

18/10/2017
11:00 | ATP 250 - Kremlin Cup
11:00 | ATP 250 - European Open - Antwerp
11:00 | ATP 250 - Stockholm Open
11:00 | WTA - Moscow - Kremlin Cup
20:45 | Qarabag - Atletico Madrid
20:45 | CSKA Moskva - Basel
20:45 | Benfica - Manchester United
20:45 | Anderlecht - PSG
20:45 | Bayern Munich - Celtic
20:45 | Chelsea - Roma
20:45 | Juventus - Sporting
20:45 | Barcelona - Olympiakos
19/10/2017
11:00 | ATP 250 - Kremlin Cup
11:00 | ATP 250 - European Open - Antwerp
11:00 | ATP 250 - Stockholm Open
11:00 | WTA - Moscow - Kremlin Cup
19:00 | Ostersunds - Athletic Club
19:00 | Zorya - Hertha BSC
19:00 | BATE - Cologne
19:00 | Crvena Zvezda - Arsenal
19:00 | Olympique Marseille - Vitoria Guimaraes
19:00 | Nice - Lazio
19:00 | Zenit - Rosenborg
19:00 | Vardar - Real Sociedad
21:05 | Villarreal - Slavia Praha
21:05 | Milan - AEK Athens
21:05 | Everton - Olympique Lyon
21:05 | Atalanta - Apollon
20/10/2017
11:00 | ATP 250 - Kremlin Cup
11:00 | ATP 250 - European Open - Antwerp
11:00 | ATP 250 - Stockholm Open
11:00 | WTA - Moscow - Kremlin Cup
17:00 | Formula 1 - United States Grand Prix - Free Practice 1
20:30 | FC Schalke 04 - Mainz 05
21:00 | Formula 1 - United States Grand Prix - Free Practice 2
21/10/2017
06:10 | MotoGP - Australian Grand Prix - Qualifying
11:00 | ATP 250 - Kremlin Cup
11:00 | ATP 250 - European Open - Antwerp
11:00 | ATP 250 - Stockholm Open
11:00 | WTA - Moscow - Kremlin Cup
13:30 | Chelsea - Watford
15:30 | Borussia M'gladbach - Bayer Leverkusen
15:30 | Eintracht - Borussia Dortmund
16:00 | Manchester City - Burnley
16:00 | Swansea City - Leicester City
16:00 | Huddersfield Town - Manchester United
17:00 | Monaco - Caen
17:00 | Formula 1 - United States Grand Prix - Free Practice 3
18:30 | Valencia - Sevilla
18:30 | Hamburger SV - Bayern Munich
20:00 | Formula 1 - United States Grand Prix - Qualifying
20:45 | Barcelona - Malaga
20:45 | Napoli - Inter Milan
DERBY OF THE WEEK
Chelsea - Roma
Derby of the week
20:45
18/10/2017
Derby of the week
W 1.61    
   W 5.75
Football Live Scores
Tennis Live Scores
Free Betting Tips