F1 2014 Singapore Grand Prix result: Hamilton wins as rival Rosberg retires

PUBLISHED: 15:06 21 September 2014 | UPDATED: 19:24 21 September 2014

Lewis Hamilton driving round the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix circuit at Marina Bay [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

Lewis Hamilton driving round the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix circuit at Marina Bay [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

Mercedes-Benz

Formula One star Lewis Hamilton won the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix from pole position – and claimed the lead in the FIA World Drivers’ Championship as a result, after Mercedes rival Nico Rosberg retired from the race.

Lewis Hamilton sprays some Champagne on the podium after winning the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]Lewis Hamilton sprays some Champagne on the podium after winning the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

The 29-year-old Mercedes AMG Petronas racer from Hertfordshire scored a lights to flag victory in Singapore around the anti-clockwise Marina Bay Street Circuit.

Hamilton took advantage of Rosberg retiring with an electrical problem after 13 laps to take the lead in the championship race. The malfunction was first detected on the laps to the grid and eventually left Rosberg stuck in neutral at his first pit stop.

Hamilton, the 2008 F1 world champion, now heads his Silver Arrows colleague by three points in the drivers’ standings, with five races to go.

After winning the 2014 Italian Grand Prix at Monza last time out, Hamilton’s win in the sport’s night race made it back-to-back victories for the Briton. And today’s (Sunday’s) Singapore success was Hamilton’s seventh win of 2014 and eighth for the Mercedes team.

2014 Singapore Grand Prix result

Provisional Singapore result:

1 Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)

2 Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull)

3 Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull)

4 Fernando Alonso (Ferrari)

5 Felipe Massa (Williams)

6 Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso)

7 Sergio Perez (Force India)

8 Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)

9 Nico Hulkenberg (Force India)

10 Kevin Magnussen (McLaren)

Sebastian Vettel crossed the line second for Red Bull, more than 13 seconds behind Hamilton, with Daniel Ricciardo completing the podium positions in third place.

Fernando Alonso was fourth for Ferrari, with Williams driver Felipe Massa fifth, but the day belonged to Hamilton. He completed a clean sweep of pole position, fastest lap and victory for the fifth time in his Formula One career.

The Singapore race winner said: “It was great to come here after winning in Monza and start the final leg of the season with such a competitive car.

“It would have been a really hardcore race if Nico had been at the front, as we clearly had the pace.”

Rosberg, who qualified second on Saturday just seven-thousandths of a second slower than Hamilton, reported a problem on the install lap and needed a late steering wheel change.

The German world championship leader was stranded on the grid when the others set off for the formation lap and the Mercedes car eventually started from the pit lane. The issue was later diagnosed as a steering column wiring loom failure.

Rosberg said: “The problems with my steering wheel began in the garage even before the race and it was a difficult moment when I couldn’t pull away from the grid – the car didn’t get out of neutral.

“When I left the pit-lane, I was only able to change gear – there was no radio, no DRS and reduced Hybrid power. We were hoping that the systems might come back to life, like the radio did, and that we could change the situation.

F1 World Drivers’ Championship standings

After 2014 Singapore Grand Prix:

1 Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 241 points

2 Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) 238

3 Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull) 181

4 Fernando Alonso (Ferrari) 133

5 Sebsatian Vettel (Red Bull) 124

6 Valtteri Bottas (Williams) 122

“But after we changed the wheel another time, we had to retire the car. It was a tough day for me and unfortunately another reliability problem for the team.”

Rosberg added: “It was at least something good for the team that Lewis was able to take the win. Now we need to analyse what happened and to optimise everything further because reliability is our issue this year.”

While Rosberg suffered all sorts of reliability issues with his Mercedes, Hamilton made a smooth start from pole position and impressively pulled clear of the Red Bulls of Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo.

Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso overtook both Red Bulls on the run to the first corner, but then locked up, ran wide at Turn One and appeared to give position back to Vettel to avoid a stewards’ penalty.

Lewis Hamilton leads the field at the start of the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]Lewis Hamilton leads the field at the start of the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

With no buttons on Rosberg’s dashboard working apart from the gear shift, the Silver Arrows star found himself down in 20th place after seven laps, some 45 seconds adrift of race leader Hamilton at that stage.

Rosberg’s disastrous race came to a painfully embarrassing end when he crawled into the pits after 13 laps for new tyres and another steering wheel.

After a lengthy stop – and being unable to get the car back into gear – Rosberg called it a day and retired from the race, with championship rival Hamilton controlling the grand prix at the front.

Hamilton pitted a second time after 26 laps, stopping for 4.7 seconds for another set of Pirelli supersofts and the removal of some debris from his car, and the Stevenage-born motor racer briefly dropped down to second place behind Ricciardo, who was still on his second set of tyres.

The Mercedes driver reclaimed the lead when Ricciardo stopped again, with Alonso now up to second, just four seconds behind the front-running Silver Arrows.

On fresh rubber, Hamilton responded to the Ferrari threat with a fastest lap to extend his lead over Alonso to six seconds.

However, the safety car was deployed after Sergio Perez lost his front wing after hitting Adrian Sutil’s Sauber, and the wing became lodged under his Force India. That left a trail of debris on the track, and Hamilton’s advantage was eroded by the safety car.

Alonso pitted again under the safety car, dropping down to fourth, behind Hamilton, Vettel and Ricciardo.

2014 F1 World Constructors’ Championship

After 2014 Singapore Grand Prix

1 Mercedes 479 points

2 Red Bull 305

3 Williams 187

4 Ferrari 178

5 McLaren 111

Hamilton was warned over the radio to avoid the debris, but the race leader reported that he’d already gone over it, but there appeared no damage to his car.

The race finally restarted after 37 laps, with Hamilton, still to use the soft tyres, putting the hammer down to pull clear of his rivals in the knowledge that he has to pit again.

Hamilton built up a 3.6-second lead over second-placed Vettel on the first lap after the safety car period.

Pushing hard, Hamilton set a new fastest lap of the race and his advantage was 11.5 seconds by lap 43 of 61.

Lewis Hamilton lifts his trophy after winning the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]Lewis Hamilton lifts his trophy after winning the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

With around 27 seconds needed for a pit stop, Hamilton had stretched his lead over Vettel to 17.6 seconds by lap 46 and the gap was 21.1 seconds on lap 49, with Alonso 28 seconds down on the leader in fourth place.

On lap 51, Hamilton’s lead was up to 24 seconds, with the driver complaining his tyres were “going off”.

He stopped for new tyres for a final time on lap 52 and emerged from the pits in second place behind Vettel and just yards ahead of Ricciardo in the other Red Bull.

On fresh rubber, he soon caught Vettel and reclaimed the lead, which he held to the finish.

"These are the days when drivers like Lewis show what makes the difference between star drivers and the superstar drivers."

Mercedes’ Toto Wolff

After a tense final stint, Hamilton said: “It was all running pretty comfortably until the Safety Car came out, which gave me some problems.

“I was driving hard to build the gap but then the tyres started dropping off and I wasn’t sure what to do – keep pushing or back off to look after them.

“So we pitted straight away and I came out behind Seb [Vettel]. But I knew they were on a two-stop strategy and that his tyres were old.

“I went for it down the back straight – the gap was pretty small and maybe I could have chosen another point on the circuit. But I luckily squeezed through and made it stick.

“Of course, it’s not an ideal result with Nico retiring, so that shows we still have work to do to get on top of reliability.

“But it’s been a great job from the team at everyone at the factories to make this mega car. Now we need to keep pushing hard for Japan in two weeks’ time.”

While it was a magnificent day for Hamilton, it was a disappointing race for the McLaren team.

Kevin Magnussen’s race was badly affected by extreme heat build-up in his car’s cockpit, which was exacerbated by the slows laps spent behind the safety car during the middle of the race.

One of the few runners inside the top 10 who needed to change tyres during the post-safety car stint, he fought back bravely on fresh rubber, finally clinching a single point for 10th on the final lap.

Jenson Button’s race seemed to be coming together as the grand prix entered its final stages – he was running a strong seventh, set to overtake Valtteri Bottas for sixth, when a power box failure shut his car down just eight laps from the finish.

The F1 circus heads to Japan next with the title race having swung Hamilton’s way after his supreme Singapore Grand Prix victory.

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