Singapore Grand Prix: Formula 1 — live | Formula One
Christian Horner speaks: “It’s a very different race today. As a street circuit, it’s harder to overtake, but now it’s a completely different ball game with longer braking distances. It was our mistake yesterday, raise your hand for it, and lessons have been learned. It’s time for us to bounce back today.
The first nominations for the rain scene for The Shawshank Redemption and Singing in the Rain. Some will say “too obvious” (not me of course). In the meantime, soak up our assessment of yesterday’s qualifications:
An announcement: the start procedure will begin at 1:05 p.m., the pit lane will open 20 minutes later and the formation lap is scheduled for 2:05 p.m.
TL; DR: Turn on the kettle.
The Sky Sports team are currently experiencing the worst fear of any broadcaster: filling dead time. Right now we’re getting live feedback from people sweeping the water off the track, as well as footage of the same. For the live blogger, of course, filling in dead time is never anything less than a delight. So: favorite movie scenes in the pouring rain? I name blade runner and Four weddings.
We’ll have another update in 15 minutes apparently. If we get a shortened race, points will only be awarded if we, the leader, complete at least two laps must be completed without a safety car. And there are three possible ranges of reduced points: up to 25% distance would be 6 points for a win; 25-50% means 13 points to win; and 50-75% is 19 points for the winner. After that, those are all the points – that Verstappen will need to clinch this title today.
In half an hour, the three-hour clock – in which the race must be completed – begins to tick. Not to be confused with the two-hour stopwatch, which starts at the start of the race… and in which it must also be finished. It’s understood? Good.
The best race of all time in the rain? The Night Belongs to Us (2007). They won’t be any of that today – as long as it’s down, the cars will stay in the garage. And the pit lane is currently flooded, so the start procedure is not even possible.
More urgent, however, it is absolutely rocking in Singapore, and the start of the race will be delayed – although we don’t know by how long. An update is expected in about 10 minutes.
Some news: George Russell will start from the pit lane after taking a new power unit, pushing it above his allocated engine parts count. He qualified 11th and placed in the top five in every race he finished this season – a record he will do well to maintain today.
No matter a victory lap, how about 309? It’s the treat that will await Max Verstappen if he manages to clinch the F1 title this afternoon. Japan, United States, Mexico, Brazil, Abu Dhabi – all five could be dismissed, at least as far as the championship is concerned, if things go the way the Dutchman does in Singapore today.
The fine print: a hell of many should pass his way. Not only did Verstappen – starting from eighth after a tough qualifying – have a grueling task on his hands to overhaul Charles Leclerc on pole, but he must also take the fastest lap and hope Leclerc and Sergio Pérez, who start first and second, end below. eighth or third respectively. Unlikely? Yes. Impossible? Certainly not.
Exactly when the championship is sealed may seem like a simple point of administration, but it also serves as a barometer of greatness: only Nigel Mansell and Michael Schumacher have ever closed the deal so soon. Verstappen, a future great who is aiming not just for titles but for dynasties, will know this better than anyone.
The subplots? The return of Mercedes: After a nightmarish start that effectively canceled their season, the team slowly plunged back into racing, race after race, and Lewis Hamilton was by far the fastest man on track at the start of the last session yesterday, finally losing their advantage and settling for third place. But on a circuit he loves, the seven-time champion will be desperate to convince the world that he will be back among the challengers next season. That said, the struggles of George Russell, whose “car let him down” according to Toto Wolff, suggests that Mercedes’ engineering problems are not yet behind them. Watch this place.
And a reason to rejoice: Alex Albon makes a noticeable comeback just three weeks after spending almost 24 hours in intensive driving after he stopped breathing following an appendectomy three weeks ago.
But until this title is definitely closed, it’s all eyes on one man. Even Devon Loch couldn’t screw it up from here… could he?