Lewis Hamilton warns Red Bull’s F1 flop in Singapore was a temporary blip

  • Mercedes driver believes rivals will win last few races of season
  • World champion Max Verstappen struggled into fifth spot

Lewis Hamilton has warned he does not expect a repeat of Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix, where Red Bull were comprehensively beaten for the first time this season. Fellow drivers, including race-winner Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris, also cautioned that the team would likely return to winning ways at the next round in Japan this weekend.

Sainz won for Ferrari at the Marina Bay circuit, from McLaren’s Norris and Mercedes’ Hamilton after a dramatic finale that saw the three drivers and Mercedes’ George Russell battling it out over the final ten laps. Red Bull, however, were off the pace all weekend. The team, until Sunday unbeaten in all 14 meetings thus far this season, were in woeful form in Singapore.

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Carlos Sainz wins nail-biting Singapore F1 GP to end Max Verstappen’s streak

  • Norris second; Hamilton third after Russell crashes on final lap
  • Verstappen’s 10-race winning run ends after he finishes fifth

Were Formula One considering quite what a show it would have without Red Bull’s dominance this season, the Singapore Grand Prix delivered a glimpse of this much-anticipated future, a spectacle beyond even the sport’s most wishful thinking.

Transforming from sedate to sensational as Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz hung on for a mighty victory, it was fitting that the curtain should fall on Red Bull’s relentless winning streak with a thriller in which world champion elect Max Verstappen was but a bit-part player.

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Carlos Sainz claims Singapore F1 GP pole but furious Verstappen struggles

  • Red Bull drivers fail to make Q3; world champion is 11th
  • Ferrari driver shares front of the grid with George Russell

After a season of utter domination for Max Verstappen and Red Bull, when the wheels finally came off the juggernaut in qualifying for the Singapore Grand Prix it was to striking effect, prompting equal measures of fury and consternation.

Carlos Sainz claimed pole at the Marina Bay circuit for Ferrari with a mighty lap between the walls, the Spaniard well and truly hooked up for his second pole in a row. Verstappen and Red Bull, in contrast, were flailing, impotent with a recalcitrant car lacking the balance and grip that has defined it as the class of the field this season.

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Toto Wolff watches Massa legal case for parallels with Hamilton’s 2021 title bid

  • Brazilian driver has taken legal action over 2008 championship
  • Mercedes chief hints team could challenge 2021 title outcome

The Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff, has indicated the team could challenge the controversial decision that cost Lewis Hamilton the 2021 world championship. Wolff acknowledged that the current legal case Felipe Massa has brought against Formula One and the FIA might set a precedent that would have a direct influence on Hamilton’s claim to the title.

Massa has taken legal action over the “crashgate” affair in 2008, when he lost the title to Hamilton by a single point. At the Singapore Grand Prix that year Massa was leading when Renault orchestrated a crash by Nelson Piquet Jr in order to benefit his teammate Fernando Alonso. During the safety car period that was triggered by the crash, when Massa pitted Ferrari released him with the fuel hose attached, he was penalised and finished 13th.

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