Sebastian Vettel has won the Singapore GP, with Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso both also finishing on the podium. Lewis Hamilton retired with a gearbox failure, front row starter Pastor Maldonado had hydraulic problems, with Michael Schumacher retiring in similar circumstances to last year’s race. There were two safety cars and the race duration reached the two hour limit before the 61 laps had passed. A number of incidents kept the stewards busy but no penalties were handed out through the race. Timo Glock finished in 12th place for Marussia – their highest finish since they entered the sport in 2010.
There were a number of key moments in the race for me. Firstly, before his retirement, Hamilton was managing to maintain the gap back to Vettel, admitting he was “cruising” before he retired. After strong showings in both Belgium and Italy, completely contrasting circuits to Singapore, it was positive to see McLaren looking so strong and had Hamilton’s gearbox not failed, he looked certain for at least a podium, if not a win. Another key moment of the race was the second safety car period, triggered by Schumacher’s crash with Vergne. Mark Webber, Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez pitted and this dropped them down the order, allowing the likes of Kimi Räikkönen, Felipe Massa and Romain Grosjean to gain – important for them in terms of the championship, especially as Webber then dropped out of the points, reducing the amount that Red Bull took over McLaren. Finally, Glock’s 12th place was significant as it moved Marussia ahead of Caterham in the constructors – crucial in terms of money.
The race was not the most exciting in terms of overtaking, but there were some incidents as drivers did try to make moves but got caught up with other drivers. Schumacher’s race came to an end when he out-braked himself and went straight into the back of Jean-Eric Vergne. After the race Vergne said there was no point being angry about it as “these things happen”, while Schumacher attributed blame to his car. It seems the stewards took a different view when Schumacher was handed a ten place grid drop, after the race, for Japan in two weeks time. Felipe Massa tried to make a move on Bruno Senna, but the pair touched and it looked like Massa was heading straight for the wall. He managed to correct the direction of his car, and was lucky the next corner was a left hander as he moved ahead of the Williams driver. The stewards investigated the move but took no further action, despite Senna classifying the move as “unbelievable”. After the first safety car, Button was nearly caught out by race leader Vettel, telling his team that he felt the Red Bull driver was “very start-stop” before the restart. The pair were called to the stewards after the race although no penalty was given. Webber was also given a post race 20s penalty for exceeding track limits during his battle with Kamui Kobayashi.
Do you agree with the stewards’ decisions today?