Mercedes-AMG’s Lewis Hamilton secured his 69th Formula 1 victory with a win on Sunday at the 2018 Singapore Grand Prix.
The Briton started on pole and was never really challenged, despite the long race being one where Mercedes’ cars have struggled in the past.
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen finished second, close to 9.0 seconds behind Hamilton, while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel claimed the final spot on the podium by finishing almost 40 seconds back.
Hamilton got a clean start but behind him Vettel attacked Verstappen, catching up with him by the first corner and then getting past at the gentle curve of Turn 6. But then the safety car was called out after the Force Indias came together, with Esteban Ocon ending up in the wall.
The restart came on lap 5, and Ferrari went with an aggressive strategy for Vettel, trying to catch Hamilton on the Ultrasoft tires. Unfortunately, during the one lap that would prove to be crucial, Vettel was held up by traffic and later suffered from overheating brakes. This allowed Verstappen to jump back into second, which must have thrilled the Dutch youngster considering the power unit troubles he suffered earlier in the weekend.
Behind the podium finishers, Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas just managed to hold off compatriot Kimi Räikkönen at Ferrari to secure fourth place. Räikkönen finished fifth after a close battle with Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo.
With only six races left this season, Hamilton’s chances of a fifth championship are looking promising. The Briton’s tally in the 2018 Drivers’ Championship now stands at 281 points. Vettel is second with 241 points and Räikkönen is third with 174 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes leads with 452 points versus the 415 of Ferrari and 274 of Red Bull. The next race on the calendar is the Russian Grand Prix in a fortnight.