Pérez wins ahead of the Ferraris

After Monaco, Sergio Pérez confirmed his ease on urban circuits! Dominated by 22 thousandths of a second this Saturday during qualifying, the Mexican took his revenge on Charles Leclerc from the first corner of the Singapore Grand Prix. A race whose start was delayed by just over an hour due to a tropical downpour that flooded the Marina Bay track. The bad weather having moved away from the circuit, it was with intermediate tires that the drivers set off with a clear advantage for those placed on the even side of the starting grid. Indeed, Sergio Pérez, Carlos Sainz Jr and Lando Norris took off better than Charles Leclerc, Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso. Behind, Max Verstappen experienced a first lap close to disaster, relegated to 12th place before starting an attempt to come back. Up front, the deal quickly became clear as the Monegasque and the Mexican were well above the competition, widening the gap lap after lap. But, after seven laps, the waltz of neutralizations was able to start and began with a collision leaving Guanyu Zhou and Nicholas Latifi on the floor.

Zero points for Alpine

The safety car spent three laps on the track and the restart only saw Max Verstappen dive to clear Sebastian Vettel to move up to eighth. In the fight with McLaren for fourth place in the constructor’s classification, the Alpine team saw its race begin to turn into a nightmare when Fernando Alonso saw his engine fail on the 21st lap, causing two laps of neutralization by the virtual safety car. The same mishap happened to Esteban Ocon on the 28th lap, causing an unwelcome point zero for the tricolor formation. As the track began to dry out slowly in several sectors, the question of switching to slick tires arose, but opinions differed. On the Mercedes side, the choice was made concerning George Russell, who started from the pit line after an engine change, from the 22nd lap. However, it soon became apparent that it was too soon. More precisely twelve laps too early. As soon as the Briton began to seize the sector records and then the fastest lap in the race, the blood of the other drivers boiled over and the waltz of pit stops was launched by Charles Leclerc. But the Monegasque did not respect his marks and stopped for more than five seconds. On the next lap, Sergio Pérez seized the opportunity to hold on to the lead for the second half of the race.

Verstappen on a bad day

Just before Esteban Ocon’s retirement, Alex Albon also caused a short neutralization when, after going straight at turn 8, he left his front wing on the track. Although the drivers opted for slicks, the track continued to hold pitfalls and Yuki Tsunoda fell into them, crashing his AlphaTauri into the protections at turn 10 and forcing the safety car to re-enter the track on lap 36. From then on, it became obvious that this race would not go to the end of the 61 laps initially planned but rather to the time limit of two hours. The race restart allowed Sergio Pérez to keep his hand against Charles Leclerc but the Mexican did not respect the rules and found himself under investigation by the stewards. His teammate, meanwhile, continued a very complicated evening. On the attack on Lando Norris, the Dutchman went over the wet part of the track and failed to brake, violently locking his wheels. A new passage through the pits then became imperative in order to finish the race. Up front, Sergio Pérez was under enormous pressure from Charles Leclerc, who then took advantage of the late activation of the DRS to attack.

Pérez held on, McLaren made a great deal

However, the Ferrari driver never found the fault, damaging his tires in the maneuver. Faced with a possible penalty, the Red Bull Racing pit asked Sergio Pérez to take a minimum five-second lead over Charles Leclerc but, under the checkered flag, the Mexican won by seven and a half seconds. during this Singapore Grand Prix, signing his second success of the season, the fourth of his career. Carlos Sainz Jr, long hooked by Lewis Hamilton before seeing the Briton make a mistake on the 33rd lap, completes the podium. But the bargain of the day is for McLaren. In difficulty since the start of the weekend, Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo took fourth and fifth place respectively. 22 points that allow the Grove team to regain fourth place in the constructors’ standings at Alpine. Lance Stroll takes a good sixth place ahead of Max Verstappen, who overtook Sebastian Vettel on the last lap. A poor performance which does not allow the Dutchman to secure the world title this weekend. Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Pierre Gasly complete the Top 10 in an eventful race, as often in Singapore. The paddock will now head to Japan and the popular Suzuka circuit next weekend.

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