Well! He can still do it! Sebastian Vettel has been celebrating his first Grand Prix victory in Singapore since 392 days in tyre poker and has managed to resurrect from his greatest sporting crisis in Formula 1.
The former champion cited triumphed in a temporarily unpredictable strategic battle under floodlight before his angry Team colleague Charles Leclerc. The young Monegasse, the last winner in Spa and Monza, felt the team had lost the victory. The power struggle at Ferrari must have finally burned out.
I am very happy, it was a great race,”said a shining vettel,”The past few weeks have not been easy for me, but I have received so much support, so many letters and messages from people who have given me courage. I packed all this in the car today.”
Vettel had had to wait for a victory since the Grand Prix of Belgium 2018, 23times he had to explain setbacks and oft en his own mistakes since then. For Vettel it was the 53rd formula-1 success, With now five victories in Singapore, the four-time World Champion is thus a record winner in the Lion City.
More: Wild battle for place three in the Formula One World Championship
Despite the third Ferrari victory in a row and the first double Scuderia since Hungary 2017, the World Championship title is expected to be given to Lewis Hamilton go. The reigning champion in the Mercedes missed the podium as a fourth, which the Dutch Max Verstappen (Red Bull) completed.
Hamilton is still comfortable in front of his five-seated Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas (Finland/231) and Leclerc (200), Verstappen (200) and Vettel (194) in six outstanding races with 296 points in the driving price. Renault pilot Nico Hilkenberg was the ninth in the series. The 32-year-old from Emmerich is still without cockpit for the coming season.
Pure joy at the Scuderia
The pole position of the new Ferrari star Leclerc before Hamilton and Vettel had before the 15th season all Surprised. An extensive aerodynamic update catapulted the 2019 overall disappointing Scuderia on Saturday almost sensationally to the top of a line that was supposed to be on the paper mainly Mercedes.
After Leclerc defended the lead from Hamilton and Vettel on the start, the Monegasse on the narrow course of the city deliberately took it slow. In this way he spared the tires and minimized the risk that the competitor would try to get past him through an earlier pit stop.
Meanwhile, the Ferrari pilot drove faster p er lap 13 seconds than at his pole time. The fastest man in the field in the first racing district was Hilkenberg, After a touch with the McLaren by Carlos Sainz, who had already arrived at the box after a round of tyre change and had free ride behind the field.
Leclerc angry: “Don’t understand this strategy at all”
Vettel was the first driver from the top group to control the box after 19 rounds. The tailor then laid down a top time and passed Leclerc, who only came a round later for the tire change. Leclerc reacted in radio without a trace: “What the hell?” Later he padded: “I don’t understand this strategy at all.”
The poker of the top teams continued to sharpen. Hamilton, who had taken the lead after Leclerc’s change of tyres, lost so much time due to a sudden sharp reduction in his tire that he fell back behind Vettel, Leclerc and Verstappen after his stop in Round 26. Before Bottas, Hamilton returned to the track only because the Finnish had to leave the gas for the World Championship Championship.
In Round 31 Vettel overtake the Italian Antonio Giovinazzi in the Alfa Romeo, who had not changed his tyres yet, and took the lead. The field collapsed as soon as the safety car pulled out, as in all the previous eleven races in Singapore.
The Ferrari command was increasingly concerned and Leclerc said before the second of three re-starts that he should do “nothing stupid”. He said, “I want everything.” Later he explained, “I won’t do anything stupid or jeopardize a double victory. I just think it’s unfair.”