The F1 field will return to Asia this coming weekend for the 2018 Singapore Grand Prix.
Ferrari will be looking to bounce back from their disappointing showing at Monza when the F1 field takes to the Yas Marina Circuit this coming Sunday. The circuit will provide an ideal opportunity for them to do just that as it is one that rivals Mercedes really struggle at. The Prancing Stag will need to be wary of the Red Bull boys, however, as they have dominated this track over recent years.
Singapore Grand Prix
Sunday 16 September
Yas Marina Circuit
Once again, Ferrari were unable to deliver the goods on home soil as a late surge from Lewis Hamilton saw the ‘Brit snatch victory out of the hands of veteran Prancing Stag man, Kimi Raikkonen, who was forced to settle for second place. The ‘Finn actually found himself sandwiched between the two Mercedes drivers when he took to the podium as Valtteri Bottas claimed third spot.
Raikonnen’s teammate, Sebastian Vettel, was forced to settle for fourth-place as contact with Lewis Hamilton saw the pole sitter forced into the pits early in the race. Vettel was joined in the Top 6 by Max Verstappen and Esteban Ocon.
The remainder of the top ten featured some familiar and unfamiliar characters with household names Sergio Perez (7th) and Carlos Sainz (8th) finishing ahead of Lance Stroll (9th) and new kid on the block, Sergey Sirotikin (10th).
To Win Race Outright
Sebastian Vettel 13/10
Lewis Hamilton 7/2
Max Verstappen 4/1
Daniel Ricciardo 6/1
Kimi Raikkonen 10/1
Valtteri Bottas 18/1
The Yas Marina Circuit is another one of Formula One’s favourite architect, Hermann Tilke’s, designs. And while Mercedes have enjoyed great success at most of the German architect’s course, this is not one of them.
The extreme temperatures have wreaked havoc on the Silver Arrows’ braking systems in the recent past so Hamilton will need to manage his brakes which means he will not be able to push his car to its limits, lest he risk brake failure on the closing few laps.
The circuit covers a total distance of 308 kilometers, with each lap equating to 5.065 kilometers and containing a staggering 23 turns. The number of turns which require sharp braking are the reason for Mercedes struggles with their brake-by-wire systems.
Mercedes actually had a decent time of it at the track last year with Lewis Hamilton claiming first place and Valtteri Bottas third. This was mainly due to an incident at the start of the race that forced Vettel, Raikkonen, and Verstappen to retire.
Fastest Lap – Daniel Ricciardo @ 7/2
The smiling Aussie really does enjoy a race out in Singapore as his second-place finish last year and his fastest laps in 2015 and 2016 attest to that.
While the senior Red Bull man hasn’t been in the best of form this year, I can still see him putting in an almighty shift under the lights at the Yas Marina.
He’s a solid bet at 7/2 to claim his third fastest lap accolade at the track.
Fastest Qualifier & To Win Race – Sebastian Vettel @ 9/10 & 13/10
The Ferrari ace was extremely unlucky to bow out in Italy and he will be desperate to bounce back from that disappointment here.
The German does enjoy an outing to Singapore and has won four of the nine races held at the Yas Marina Complex. He also took pole position at the track last year.
The safe play here is to back ‘Seb to take pole as I think his Ferrari has enough gas to ward off the threat of the Red Bulls. For those who are willing to roll the dice a bit more, there’s a touch more value on the German ace on the outright race win market.