Rosberg goes to the top of F1 standings after tight victory in Singapore
Nico Rosberg is the winner of Singapore Grand Prix and after the third consecutive victory, he is the new Formula 1 World Championship leader. Mercedes driver was at the top from start to finish and completely deserved this triumph in one of the most interesting and most intense races of 2016.
The race went under the safety car right after the start. Nico Hulkenberg’s car was badly damaged after hitting the wall. Force India driver had a contact with one of Toro Rosso cars and had had to retire. Soon after, Valtteri Bottas had to pit under the yellow flags because of a tire puncture and the Finn later retired
After the restart, Rosberg was still on the top, followed by Ricciardo and Hamilton, while Raikkonen and Alonso profited from the poor start of Max Verstappen and moved up to the 4th and 5th place respectively. On the back of the grid, Sebastian Vettel, who started from the last position, moved up to the 16th while Romain Grosjean sat out the race because of technical issues.
After the first pit-stops, Rosberg still had a comfortable lead. Ricciardo was 2nd, well ahead of Hamilton and Raikkonen. The battle for the 5th place was quite interesting. After 23 laps, Sergio Perez and Vettel were ahead of Alonso, but they still had to complete pit-stop, so the real opponents for the Spaniard were Daniil Kvyat and Verstappen who looked a bit nervous, being unable to overtake the Russian.
Interestingly, after the first half of the race, Kevin Magnussen and Esteban Gutierrez were in the points but what was more interesting was the moment when Raikkonen managed to overtake Hamilton on lap 33 to take 3rd position. However, not for a long. The reigning champion claimed back the position on lap 47 just because to the poor tactical decision made by Ferrari.
Mercedes gambled with Nico Rosberg in the final stage of the race, opting not to call German driver for another pit-stop. Ricciardo was much faster and his backlog was decreasing lap after lap but that still wasn’t enough.
Rosberg scored his 22nd career win and first at Marina Bay Street Circuit. Ricciardo finished second for the fourth time this year while Hamilton managed to keep the 3rd place in front of Raikkonen.
Rest of the points went to Sebastian Vettel, Max Verstappen, Fernando Alonso, Sergio Perez, Daniil Kvyat and Kevin Magnussen.