Our Formula One old boy makes a brief return from retirement to preview this weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix.
The Formula One field makes the jump back to Asia this week following the conclusion of the European leg of the calendar. While Mercedes are cantering to another Constructor’s Championship victory, things are still alive in the Drivers’ Championship with Lewis Hamilton two points above teammate Nico Rosberg.
This race could well determine the fate of the 2016 Drivers’ Championship as momentum is vital at this stage of the season.
Another race, another Mercedes win. That was the story out in Monza a fortnight ago with Nico Rosberg driving to a comfortable 15-second victory ahead of his Mercedes colleague. They were followed across the line by Sebastian Vettel whose podium finish sent the Italian crowd into raptures.
The battle for mid-table positions was led by Kimi Raikonnen, whose fourth place finished ensured it was a semi-successful weekend for the ‘Prancing Stag’. Daniel Ricciardo brought his Red Bull across the line in third, six seconds ahead of Valterri Bottas in the Williams. Max Verstappen ensured that Bottas would be sandwhiched between the two Red Bulls, with the Dutch youngster bringing his car across the line in seventh.
The top ten was rounded by Sergio Perez (eighth), Felipe Massa (ninth) and Nico Hulkenberg (10th).
The Marina Bay Street Circuit is another one of Formula One’s favourite architect Hermann Tilke’s designs. The circuit was constructed in less than a year and this will be the eighth staging of the event which debuted on the Formula One calendar in 2008. The race itself, covers a total distance of 308km, with each 5.065km lap containing 23 turns.
The ultrasoft tyres will make an appearance out in Singapore along with the supersofts and soft compounds.
As is always the case out in Singapore, were likely to see some thunderstorms during the free practice and qualifying stints but overhead conditions are set to be ideal for the entirety of the race.
Singapore Grand Prix | Sunday 18 September | Marina Bay Circuit | 13:30
To Win Outright
Lewis Hamilton 27/20 | Nico Rosberg 33/10 | Daniel Ricciardo 33/10 | Max Verstappen 6/1 | Sebastian Vettel 9/1 | Kimi Raikkonen 20/1
Podium Finish: Sebastian Vettel (Yes) 16/10
I can’t believe these odds are available. Vettel has a fantastic record at the track, winning four of the last five races out in Singapore. I’ll be throwing a large stake on the German to get himself on the podium.
Fastest Qualifier: Nico Rosberg 3/1
The bookies have also been kind with this price. Rosberg has been in fine fettle during qualifying this term getting himself on pole in a whole heap of races. At 3/1, he’s definitely worth a punt.
To Win Outright: Lewis Hamilton 27/20
Lewis has tended to struggle out in Singapore with his last race victory there coming in 2009. He’ll be desperate to pull away from his compatriot on the Drivers’ Championship standings, however, and I reckon that desperation will see him to a win. Get on the Brit for a win at 15/10.