Finance

No Further Action over First Lap Crash in Singapore

No Further Action over First Lap Crash in Singapore

Hamilton avoided the trouble and progressed from fifth on the grid to first, ahead of Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo, as the cars race finally restarted after a safety auto.

"Today I'll accept a little bit of defeat but there's still a lot to play for tomorrow", Ricciardo said. "Fantastic job with the team strategy", Hamilton said over the radio, before leaping out of his vehicle and hugging his engineers. I just know that when those conditions happen it's more of a lottery, there's more opportunity, it levels the playing field and then there's a real race and that's what I was excited to have.

"You might have to carry us out of the cars tomorrow but I'm sure I'll have a very strong race and get some big points". Really unfortunate for the Ferraris but it was, as I said, a really great result for the team.

Hamilton and Mercedes had braced themselves for a race of "damage limitation" after struggling in qualifying.

'The Stewards examined video evidence and heard from Sebastian Vettel, the driver of auto 5, Kimi Raikkonen, the driver of vehicle 7, Max Verstappen, the driver of vehicle 33 and the team representatives.

That in itself could be a tough task, with Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen also ahead of the Briton and Singapore a notoriously hard circuit for overtaking.

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Hamilton could only manage fifth place ahead of teammate Valtteri Bottas, while Hamilton's chief Formula One title rival Sebastian Vettel stormed to pole.

Polesitter Vettel moved across from the outside in an attempt to cover-off the fast-starting Verstappen, who ended up being squeezed between the Ferrari pair as Raikkonen surged up the inside.

"At the same time, vehicle 5, which had a slower start, moved to the left hand side of the track; auto 33 and auto 7 then collided resulting in a chain collision with auto 5 and, ultimately, auto 14 (Fernando Alonso) at the next turn".

Having built on that advantage, championship leader Hamilton was frustrated by the reappearance of the safety auto on lap 11 when Daniil Kvyat drove into the barriers.

Ricciardo and then Hamilton pitted for ultra-soft tyres after laps 28 and 29 and the Briton emerged 8.7 seconds ahead with 50 minutes left on an increasingly quick track. 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.