F1 leader Hamilton wins Singapore GP; Verstappen 2nd

Singapore F1 GP Auto Racing 28078 - F1 leader Hamilton wins Singapore GP; Verstappen 2nd

SINGAPORE (AP) — Lewis Hamilton wins the floodlit Singapore Grand Prix from pole position on Sunday to extend his championship lead over Sebastian Vettel to a commanding 40 points.

The Mercedes driver made a clean start and was largely untroubled as he beat Red Bull driver Max Verstappen by nine seconds, with Vettel much further back in third.

The four-time Formula One champion recorded his seventh win of the season and 69th of his F1 career. Vettel’s championship bid crumbled when he crashed from pole here last year and then went on to lose the title by 46 points to Hamilton.

It is looking increasingly like a repeat scenario for the Ferrari driver, who now has just six races left to catch Hamilton as they both bid for a fifth F1 title.

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Vettel was unhappy with his team after qualifying in third place behind Verstappen, and the German driver sounded irritated during Sunday’s race after a team strategy error to send him into the pits for a tire change before Hamilton failed to work.

Instead he lost position and crucial points, dropping back behind Verstappen having earlier overtaken him.

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Jerome Pugmire on Twitter: www.twitter.com/jeromepugmire

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