A big weekend for the Formula 1 Ferrari team as driver, Carlos Sainz, took pole position in the Singapore Grand Prix, on the Marina Bay Street Circuit.
Saniz’s win put an end to Max Verstappen’s 10 consecutive win streak, and was also the first race this season not won by team Red Bull.
“We put together a very good race to bring home that P1 that tastes honestly as good as it can taste,” Saniz said in a post race interview to TF1 about the driver’s first win of the season.
Saniz talked a little to TF1 reporters about the pace of his Ferrari car and what he and his team need to do to capitalize on opportunity when the pace presents itself,
“Putting together such a perfect execution also of the race not so much about the pace, because we know that this year our pace is going to fluctuate race to race. But mainly trying to execute those races in a perfect manner.”
Red Bull had been experiencing car troubles all weekend. Which led to Verstappen’s P5 finish, and his fellow Red Bull driver, Serigo Perez’s P8 finish.
Friday at practice one the Red Bulls placed P3 and P7, the drivers already radioing to their crew that something was off about their cars. By the second practice, Verstappen was already down to P8 with Perez P7. The Red Bull’s had picked up some pace by the final practice before qualifying where they found themselves fourth and eight.
Vertsappen and Perez didn’t make it past qualifying round two, which put Verstappen P11 and Perez P13 on the grid to start out Sunday’s race. Ultimately Red Bull found themselves in a difficult position to come back and score points. The Red Bull’s finished the race with Verstappen fifth and Perez eight, still scoring some points for their team, but taking a big step back from where they have been placing every race weekend this season.
“I think we will be quick in Suzuka,” Verstappen said to Sky Sports. The Red Bulls head into Japan this upcoming weekend, with fans anxious to see whether they will be as dominant as they’ve been so far this year.
Lando Norris took second place for team McLaren this weekend. McLaren are currently fifth in the Constructors Championship, behind front runners, Red Bull, Mercedes, Ferrari, and Aston Martin. Norris won his team 18 points in Singapore and is currently eighth in the Drivers Championship standings behind Mercedes driver, George Russell.
“I kind of expected George to get past me, just out of the corner because I lost the ring completely but I just had a little bit more straight line speed,” Norris told TFI.
Mercedes driver, Russell, had been putting up a fight in the race against Norris, and his own teammate Lewis Hamilton. Towards the end of the race, Russell crashed head first into the wall, the car and driver were forced to retire for the remainder of the race weekend. Russell had clipped his right wheel on the side of the wall before approaching a left turn. Russell’s wheel refused to turn and put the driver into the wall, ruining any chance he had at a podium finish.
“I think we were half a car’s length from winning the race. Had I got past Lando, we would have had the opportunity. I think we would have been able to get past Carlos and then just the last lap. But after a millimeter lapse of concentration, it was game over. Just so sorry to the whole team, really.” Russell said to Sky Sports after his crash.
Russell’s Mercedes teammate, Hamilton, finished P3 and got to celebrate with champagne on the podium. Hamilton scored 16 points for his team and had the fastest lap time of the race. Mercedes is currently second to Red Bull, in the Constructors Championship.
Oscar Piastri finished P7 in Singapore for team Mclaren. Earlier this week Piastri signed a contract with Mclaren, guaranteeing his spot as a driver until 2026. We will be seeing more of the Australian driver throughout the next couple of seasons in Formula 1.
French driver, Charles Leclerc, finished P4 for team Ferrari, gaining 12 points. Leclerc has been breathing down the neck of his teammate, Saniz, just short of a podium these past couple of races.
Liam Lawson scored points for team Alfa Tauri by placing ninth during the Singapore race weekend. Lawson is still acting as a replacement driver for an injured Daniel Riccardo, who is still out of current races because of a metacarpal injury that happened after he crashed his car a few weeks ago during a practice round. These were Lawson’s first points ever won in his Formula 1 career.
Lance Stroll, driver for Aston Martin, was amongst a handful of drivers who did not make it past the finish line in Singapore. Stroll had a bad crash in Stage 1 of qualifying. The car was damaged so badly that it wasn’t repaired in time before the race the following day. This crash made Stroll the second most expensive driver in terms of crash costs during the 2023 season.
Five drivers did not finish the Singapore Grand Prix. Drivers, Russell, Valtteri Bottas, Esteban Ocon, Yuki Tsunoda, and Stroll, all did not cross the finish line in Singapore and didn’t score any points for their teams this past weekend.
Next race weekend the teams and its drivers are heading to Suzuka, Japan to kick off the Japanese Grand Prix at the Suzuka International Racing Course. Sainz will be hunting for his third podium win in a row, and to gain some points to overtake Mercedes’ spot as runner-up in the Constructors Championship, behind Red Bull. The race will commence on Sept. 23rd, 10 p.m. PST.