Updated: 23/09/2012 19:44 | By pa.press.net

Vettel wins in Singapore



Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel won the Singapore Grand Prix

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel won the Singapore Grand Prix

Sebastian Vettel shone in Formula One's night race for the second successive season, but for Lewis Hamilton the lights may have gone out on his championship chances.

Vettel capitalised on Hamilton's retirement with a gearbox problem on lap 23 when comfortably leading the Singapore Grand Prix to take the chequered flag.

The 24-year-old now trails Ferrari's Fernando Alonso by 29 points, the Spaniard claiming the 81st podium of his career - only Michael Schumacher and Alain Prost have more - by finishing third behind McLaren's Jenson Button.

This latest win for the reigning world champion ends Vettel's longest winless run of nine races since joining Red Bull in 2009. As team principal Christian Horner pointed out to Vettel after crossing the line: "Well done, you're back in the championship again."

For Hamilton, his recent rollercoaster run now leaves him 52 points behind Alonso, and with his last five races reading - retired, first, retired, first, retired. Following the 27-year-old's win in Italy, back-to-back triumphs appeared on the cards when he grabbed his 24th career pole and then produced a superb start, but his gearbox problem saw the Briton grinding to a halt down an escape road on lap 23.

That promoted Vettel into the lead ahead of Button and Williams' Pastor Maldonado, but the latter was also forced into retirement during the first of the two safety car sessions that followed in quick succession. Narain Karthikeyan sparked the opener, maintaining Singapore's 100% record for safety cars over its five-year run, sliding his HRT into a wall on entry into Anderson Bridge from which there was no recovery.

The safety car pitted after running for five laps, but not for a moment of drama as Button nearly ran into the back of Vettel at one point shortly before the restart.

However, it was not long before safety car driver Bernd Maylander was back on track as for the second successive year at this track, when Michael Schumacher ran into the back of a rival. On this occasion the seven-time champion was late on to the brakes of his Mercedes, hurtling into the rear of Jean-Eric Vergne's Toro Rosso.

Once the safety car disappeared, for the leaders the rest of the race was fairly routine, with Vettel finishing 8.9secs clear of Button, with Alonso grinding out another podium.

Behind the trio, Force India's Paul Di Resta grabbed a career-high fourth, followed by Mercedes' Nico Rosberg and Kimi Raikkonen in his Lotus, the Finn now 45 points adrift in the title race. Team-mate Romain Grosjean was seventh, followed by Ferrari's Felipe Massa, Daniel Ricciardo in his Toro Rosso and Red Bull's Mark Webber, surely out of the title running now as he is 61 points down.

52Comments
23/09/2012 20:51
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whats sad is McLaren knew there was something wrong with their gearbox - so instead of taking a 5 place grid penalty for changing a gearbox, they chanced it for victory and got greedy for 25 points. If they changed the gearbox they would have probably got on the podium and got some points. Some points are better than non. What plebs !
23/09/2012 16:38
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Congrats to Seb who turned his disappointment in quali into a race victory. Mclaren yet again failed to bring home both drivers and this is what could ultimately cost them the constructors title and almost certainly the drivers title. A big well done to Paul Di Resta who isnt doing himself any harm in the possibility of getting signed by a bigger team. Come on Mclaren - if you can be consistent from now till the end of the season then you just still might pull it off.
23/09/2012 19:23
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i meet lewis at goodwood 4 years ago i did get to talk to him,but he was so rude and up his **** at the time ,i know some1 in his team and was told what lewis wants  he gets .he is not worth 1000000000 per race if he moves .button is far a better driver 
23/09/2012 19:45
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Well said namzat  mantaz : i guess that about sums him up. sulky and vain!
23/09/2012 18:06
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I believe that will be last straw and sadly Lewis will sign for Mercedes.Michael Schumacher will retire gracefully and a true great.
23/09/2012 22:36
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A friend of mine was at funky buddha the night Lewis Hamilton was there with friends.. All i'm sayin is poor Nicole you deserve better!
23/09/2012 20:28
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Don,t care who won it, as long as hamilton didn,t, he,s so fake.
23/09/2012 21:00
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HAMILTON IS A DRAMA QUEEN...i bet he really envied vettlels sparkly helmet...im sure his relatiohnship with scherzinger is genuine and not at all a scam.
23/09/2012 19:35
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what,s the problem with Maclaren car, are you guys given up, I am so sorry for poor Lewis; always give his best. keep up your chine man, you are the best.
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Gordon Cooper wind your neck in you wan#er
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Scary John you seem obsessed with mens bums are you gay not that they bother me but are you coming out
23/09/2012 22:06
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tbh im glad hammy didnt win again,
he is an amatur driver at best,

mclaren would do well to get rid of him at the end of his contract and bring in an older hand, someone who can get a car to the end, not kill it.

seb for the championship,
and no gordon its not racist, he is just crap, arrogant, and up him self.
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Gordon Cooper the same one your parents crawled out of (just like that)
24/09/2012 08:33
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JOHN REYNOLDS - YOUR TWO COMMENTS JUST ABOUT SUM YOU UP - YOU CANNOT SPEAK WITHOUT SWEARING AND OTHER DISGUSTING STUFF - WHAT GUTTER DID YOU CRAWL OUT OF.   

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Scary john all you talk about is mens bums know your talking about young school boys your a sick paedo go get some help
23/09/2012 18:10
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@ kevin osouf

''I hope you crash'' !!!

 You sad pathetic imbecile....that just about qualifies you are saddest person to post on here this year.

Morons like you are a sad reflection on the worst that humanity has to offer.....are you a  Jeremy Kyle regular ?

24/09/2012 08:54
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The way Vettel pulls that stupid face and sticks his finger up,makes me want to rip it off and shove it up his arse
24/09/2012 10:34
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Someone needs to tell Vettel that what he does with his finger is offensive...he should turn his hand and then it would relate to No1. Not 'sit on this', or 'up yours!' :) I love it.
24/09/2012 10:44
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John Reynolds, shouldn't you be at school by now or are you playing truant again? I see from some of your earlier comments that you are probably an angry young person who has just had a major shock when finding that your first pubic hair has appeared today? Calm down and stop being offensive to other posters, it will only bring you out in spots
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