Sebastian Vettel took his second consecutive win around the streets of Singapore in today’s fascinating Grand Prix.
The reigning world champion won by 8.9secs over Jenson Button with Fernando Alonso in third, setting up a thrilling finale to the world championship with six races remaining. The win moves Sebastian into second in the championship and closes the gap to current championship leader Alonso to 29 points.
Vettel’s team-mate Mark finished tenth position, his strategy compromised by the two safety car periods caused first by Narain Karthikeyan hitting the wall on lap 30 and then an incident between Michael Schumacher and Jean-Eric Vergne on lap 38. He was however handed a post race 20secs penalty and slipped to 11th.
Lotus F1 Team achieved a double finish, with Kimi Raikkonen finishing sixth and Romain Grosjean seventh, putting four Renault-engined cars into the top ten.
It was however a difficult day for the Williams F1 Team. Pastor Maldonado retired on lap 36 with a hydraulic leak and Bruno Senna on the final lap of the race while running in 12th. The Brazilian’s car developed a suspected KERS problem so to avoid damage to the engine he was retired from the race.
Caterham F1 Team achieved a double finish with Heikki Kovalainen 15th and Vitaly Petrov 19th, two laps behind Vettel, following a problem with the front left wheel nut that delayed him significantly in the pits.
The result extends Red Bull Racing’s lead in the constructors’ championship over McLaren by a further seven points. Ferrari is third with 245 while Lotus F1 Team remains in a close fourth with 231. In the drivers’ championship, Alonso has 194 points to Vettel’s 165. Raikkonen remains third with 149 while Hamilton slips to fourth with 142 to Webber’s 132.
Rémi Taffin, Renault Sport F1 head of track operations
Congratulations to Sebastian and Red Bull Racing for bouncing back here in Singapore. We have worked very hard with the team in Viry and Milton Keynes since the Italian Grand Prix, and to come away with a win having made in-roads in the drivers’ championship is a fantastic team result. Getting a double finish with Lotus F1 Team and Mark Webber in tenth gives four Renault engines in the top ten this weekend, a result which will be very welcome. We must however stay fully focused on the job in hand to ensure 100% reliability in the most crucial part of the year and to be as competitive as we can across all our partners.
Williams had a very difficult race and the disappointment of a double retirement. Pastor has performed very well all weekend and looked set for an excellent finish, while Bruno had made solid progress from P22 on the grid. Unfortunately Caterham slips to 11th in the championship with Marussia’s result today, so we will work closely with them to try to regain this position in the coming Grands Prix.