No pole but Red Bull confident of Singapore win

The Marina Bay Street Circuit a spectacular setting for the Singapore Grand Prix held at night under floodlights

The Marina Bay Street Circuit a spectacular setting for the Singapore Grand Prix held at night under floodlights

Lewis Hamilton has claimed a surprise win at an incident-packed Singapore Grand Prix with Australia's Daniel Ricciardo finishing second for Red Bull and Hamilton's Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas third.

"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.

"I think there was damage on the vehicle already and then it didn't matter, to be honest", the German told Britain's Channel 4 television.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton drives out of the pit lane during Friday practice for the Singapore Grand Prix
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton drives out of the pit lane during Friday practice for the Singapore Grand Prix

"We didn't have the difference in wheelbase last year and the year before and 2014 and we always seemed to struggle particularly in Singapore". I'm happy that not only I retired, but all three of us, so we all have a bit of pain. Who would know what would happen?

The different concepts that Mercedes and Ferrari adopted this year have led to swings in form - with Mercedes' longer wheelbase vehicle dominant at high speed tracks such as Silverstone and Monza, and Ferrari better on tight circuits including Monaco and Singapore.

"I think mainly Sebastian started squeezing me", Verstappen said. Hamilton just drove too well for either Ricciardo or Bottas to be able to take the win off him. "I definitely went in today thinking it was about damage limitation". "I've just got to try and keep the pressure on the guys in front without cooking my vehicle, if I can".

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"That was the most frustrating thing, frustrating not to get that first win here".

Ricciardo insisted having to manage the gearbox did not play a major role in the outcome, and he was disappointed that Red Bull's early weekend form did not continue into the race.

"It's how this business is and it doesn't change much because we're not in the race and [obviously] it's a pity and we can't show the pace we have but I'm sure there will be more opportunities".

Singapore Grand Prix: Circuit to host race until at least 2021
World champion Nico Rosberg has announced that he will join Robert Kubica's management team to work on the driver's return to F1. The Mercedes driver told the BBC: "Maybe we don't have the best package for this weekend, but we still have a great vehicle ".

"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. It was probably good that I had a bad start. The two other retirements - both with technical problems - were Nico Hulkenberg, who had at one point looked set for fourth for Renault, and Haas's Kevin Magnussen.

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