SINGAPORE: Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel won the Singapore Grand Prix on Sunday and runaway championship leader Lewis Hamilton retired mid-race, injecting new life into the fight for the Formula One title.
Vettel led from start to finish in a race that was temporarily interrupted by a fan wandering on the track.
Vettel’s third win of the season came by 1.4 seconds over Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was third, as all three finished in the positions they started at the Marina Bay street circuit.
Hamilton suffered a power delivery failure that the team took a long time to diagnose and could not fix, forcing him out midrace.
His championship lead over Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, who finished fourth, was cut from 53 to 41 points, with Vettel a further eight points back.
Williams driver Valterri Bottas was fifth, Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat sixth and Force India’s Sergio Perez seventh.
Toro Rosso teenager Max Verstappen finished eighth, appearing to refuse team orders in the closing laps to move over for teammate Carlos Sainz Jr., who was ninth. Sauber’s Felipe Nasr passed Romain Grosjean on the penultimate lap for the last points position.
There were two safety-car periods in the race. The first came following a collision between Williams’ Felipe Massa, who was coming out of the pits, and Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg. Race stewards blamed Hulkenberg, and he will get a three-place grid penalty at the next race.
The second came in bizarre circumstances when a fan was seen wandering on the track near the Anderson Bridge section. Vettel shouted over the team radio “there is a man on the track!” and the safety car was immediately deployed. The casually-dressed man soon climbed over a trackside barrier and off the track and the race resumed.