Formula One | Singapore, Singapore
OTHER: So India will not return on next years calendar. The long-awaited return from Mexico is happening though. And New-Jersy (USA) is not happening for sure, it seems. Dutch-men Albers has left Caterham again (as boss) due to reasons outside of the sport. And there is a sharpened look on the regulations in place since last week about radio-transmissions. Altough I didn't really senced it from this weekend. But perhaps we see more of it for the rest of the season. This weekend was perhaps a weekend to learn for the teams, engineers and especially the drivers. The rules where not yet clear and adjuster (before training 1 started).
QUALLY: It was an exciting qually. And it was a sign of interesting racing this weekend. I also saw some Trainings due to my holiday and it sure looked to be great. But I never really 'got it' what Singapore was trying to be. Now I know, it doesn't try to be / nor is it: another Monaco it's a different type of street circuit more or less like Melbourne, but ther barriers are a bit closer to the track. In the end qually saw alot of Ferrari and Red Bull in the fight with Mercedes accross the different part of qually. Unfortantly Kimi had to gave up due to electric problems with his Ferrari. Besides that no real suprises. Force India and Sauber where in the mix between Q1 and 2. And McLaren and Toro Rosso had there (for now) usual fight between them for Q2 or 3. Williams did good again, as did Ferrari and Red Bull. Now Ferrari and Red Bull were always faster and more tense on Singapore, so yeah it's good. Most exciting bit during qually ? The difference between Lewis and Nico (his team mate). Lewis on pole, and Nico on 2nd by just 0.007 thousand of a sec. Wow !!!
RACE: In front of the start Rosberg seemed to have a steering wheel problem. Just after his installation lap towards the grid. He had another issue after getting on the grid. And that went on a bit too long, which caused him to start from the pit. And that with Lewis on pole wasn't a good point-of-view for Nico. Then after the warm-up lap it was Kamui who put his Caterham besides the road. Not returning to the grid for the start of the race. Too much going wrong in there lately. Then when the race started Hamilton was great from the line as were the 2 Red Bull's. Alonso was quick as well, even a bit too quick and he needed to give the place back to Vettel. It made loose some great fighting in the front. And also the middle was quiet packed with battles. Rosberg had to gave up his fight after the pit-stop he had to make went wrong. But what do you expect from a car that must make 2 gear shifts up or down and a glutch that doesn't work properly. So they had to go into the garage. Meanwhile the fight in the middle went 'high' between Perez, Sutil, Magnussen, Vergne, Grosjean, Maldonado and some others. Maldonado was on a great drive, almost points scoring for Lotus. A lot of drivers went accross track-limits. Which made it crowded for the stewards I recon. Halfway the race a couple of cars were already out: Kobayashi, Rosberg and Gutierrez. The safety car that was released for the cause of a collision between Sutil and Perez (victim this time). Went on a bit too long on the road. Causing the time frame of the race to be reached. Which it eventually did by one lap (so 60 laps instead of 61). After it was back on it's way we saw a great start from Hamilton, really poring Vettel backwards. It was like the rest of the field stood still. Lewis was under pressure by his tyres though. And needed another pit stop. The rest as well, but not as much. We saw however a couple of drop outs again: Sutil and Button. Of all the people that went out it was most sour for Gutierrez. Normally I am not a Gutierrez fan, but he really could have make some points for Sauber. Which would mean that every sponsor-money-talk would be out of the window a bit more. He CAN really drive, but this was to much bad-luck really. He was quiet angry/pissed when he got out of the car. Which was understandable. Then with 20 - 15 more laps to go it was Lewis who almost lost it (in it's mind), and was afraid his tyres would go or even blow. The team could reassure him. And wanted him in front of Vettel after his last (really crucial) pit stop. They managed slightly, in front of Ricciardo, but not Vettel. Lewis 'hammered' it donw though. And was really flying those last laps. After that fight was done, the race looked 'done' to be honoust. And gave already more overtakings and excitement then normal. But in the middle of the pack there was still a lot going on. Bottas was not that stressed about his tyres, which he should have been. In the end he was really sliding away accross the road. On the other hand it was Vergne who really went blazin'. Toro Rosso will be in for some suprise if Vergne gets a seat for next year. And Kvyat will be under-performing next to Verstappen Jr. Personally I think they could have better kept Vergne. He knows when to perform the most and most of the time he does so in the second half of the season. So if he doesn't get a seat for next year elsewhere he should go towards Indycars I recon ! Some nice moves from him and Perez near the end. Magnussen was a little to much on edge. And 5 or 4 laps near the end it looked like Ricciardo and Alonso could go passed Vettel. But it was just a couple of laps to short. All and all a really great race ! All be it that most of the tyres went away in the last couple of laps. In the end Hamilton deserved the win in front of Vettel, Ricciardo, Alonso, Massa and Vergne... Of to Japan (in 2 weeks time).