Sport

Hamilton as right as rain

Hamilton as right as rain”

The Briton cashed in after Vettel, Ferrari team mate Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull's front row contender Max Verstappen smashed into each other as they raced off the wet starting grid and into the first corner.

Despite his useful points advantage with six races remaining the three-time F1 world champion says his approach won't alter due to the championship complexion with a mix of aggression and caution.

As the rain fell on the Marina Bay Street Circuit ahead of the 8pm race start on Sunday evening (Sept 17), there were plenty of anxious frowns as the Formula 1 drivers gazed skywards.

Neither Ferrari driver assigned blame for the incident in post-race interviews, but Verstappen believed Vettel was at fault, dubbing his move "not so clever". Vettel meanwhile managed to continue with heavy damage before spinning just a few corners later, to eventually retire and hand the lead to race victor Lewis Hamilton.

Formula One next heads to Malaysia, where Ricciardo led Verstappen in a one-two a year ago, after Lewis Hamilton retired his Mercedes from a comfortable lead with a blown engine.

With seven points the difference between first and second, even finishing runner-up to Vettel on Sunday would see Hamilton drop four points behind the German.

"God blessed me today, for sure", he said later, dripping with champagne. "I definitely went in today thinking it was about damage limitation".

Horner did not go as far as Verstappen in laying the blame completely at Vettel's feet but said he has no doubt his driver did nothing wrong.

This rapid removal of the GP of Singapore is a blow to Vettethe, second three points in the drivers ' standings by Hamilton. But, after Fernando Alonso retired with terminal damage and Daniil Kvyat found the wall, the Safety Car came out for a second appearance.

"I don't think it was a racing incident", added Verstappen.

"That's not an excuse - if you're fighting for the world championship, you shouldn't take those risks to squeeze someone that much".

"They say it is more than what we produce with our flights and our cars, which is kind of insane to think".

Ricciardo insisted having to manage the gearbox did not play a major role in the outcome, and he was disappointed that Red Bull's early weekend form did not continue into the race. Unfortunately this race we had a lot of hopes. "I had a good start but then obviously got hit and our race was done so it's a shame".



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