March 23, 2018

Max Verstappen blames Sebastian Vettel for start crash

17 September 2017, 07:36 | Joan Schultz

I didn't see that much - Vettel blindsided by early Singapore crash

Confident Vettel leaves Hamilton needing 'miracle'

"Yeah, I still believe [Red Bull can win]", said Ricciardo, who qualified third.

The Briton capitalised on a crash at the start involving title rival Sebastian Vettel, the German's Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen and the Red Bull Racing auto of Max Verstappen, which eliminated all three men, to win at the Marina Bay Circuit for a third time.

Verstappen has been sandwiched by the two Ferraris for a few seconds after the red lights giving the start are turned off.

But despite an especially hard Singapore so far, Mercedes motorsport chief Toto Wolff is adamant his team has taken the right option for the balance of the season.

Hamilton, who started fifth on the grid, managed to avoid the carnage and took the lead as Vettel's initial crash damage resulted in him spinning out on the run to Turn 4.

Vettel initially appeared to have escaped serious damage as he withstood Hamilton's bid for the lead through the opening turns, but it quickly became clear that the Ferrari was wounded, and the injury became terminal when the four-time champion spun into the wall between turns four and five.

"For sure, it's bitter but it's done", said the four times Singapore GP victor, whose retirement ended a run of 18 successive points finishes.

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All three drivers were forced out of the race, allowing Hamilton to take the lead behind a safety auto. "It was probably good that I had a bad start", Ricciardo said.

"I can't win the bloody thing".

"I saw this commotion happening", Hamilton said. "Today, I'll accept a little bit of defeat but there's still a lot to play tomorrow".

"I tried to back out of it because I could see it coming, but the rear tyres are wider than the front so I couldn't back out of it anymore", he added. Jolyon Palmer finished sixth for his first points of the season, on the weekend it was announced he will be replaced by Sainz Jr. next season.

Belgian rookie Stoffel Vandoorne was seventh for McLaren ahead of Canadian teenager Lance Stroll in the Williams and Romain Grosjean in the Haas.

Esteban Ocon qualified the second Force India auto fourteenth, ahead of Romain Grosjean's Haas.

With three safety auto interruptions, the race ended with 58 of the 61 laps completed after hitting the two-hour mark.

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