Singapore GP practice as it happened

Live text highlights of second practice for the Singapore Grand Prix at Marina Bay, where Sebastian Vettel is fastest.

20 September 2013 Last updated at 16:40

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As it happened

  1. 1620: 
    Singapore GP

    It's time for me to bid you farewell. Thanks, as always, for your company. Keep an eye out for Inside F1 with Lee McKenzie, Eddie Jordan and Gary Anderson at 1845 BST on the BBC News channel.

    Can Fernando Alonso, championship leader Sebastian Vettel's close title rival, find something overnight to close the gap? You'll have to join me tomorrow to find out.

    I'll be back at 1030 to start building up to third and final practice before qualifying for the Singapore Grand Prix. Until then, it's good afternoon from me. See ya.

  2. 1615: 

    Here's Andrew Benson's second practice report. We'll have video highlights of that session up on the website later this afternoon, too.


    Sean Barron: I'll put a punt on Rosberg for pole position and victory. Vettel in 2nd, Hamilton 3rd.

  4. 1610: 

    Well it's all looking rather good for Sebastian Vettel who is targeting a third successive victory on the streets of Singapore and a seventh of the season. After another year where the championship started looking open, Vettel has ruthlessly grabbed control and looks unlikely to loosen his grip.

  5. 1606: 

    1) Vettel 2) Webber 3) Rosberg 4) Hamilton 5) Grosjean 6) Alonso 7) Button 8) Raikkonen 9) Sutil 10) Perez 11) Ricciardo

    12) Vergne 13) Di Resta 14) Hulkenberg 15) Massa 16) Gutierrez 17) Bottas 18) Maldonado 19) Van Der Garde 20) Pic 21) Chilton 22) Bianchi

  6. 1603: 

    Three-time world champion and BBC 5 live analyst Sir Jackie Stewart: "No serious incidents, which quite often happens on a circuit of this kind. Red Bull have shown they are dominant, with their cars 1-2."

  7. 1600: 
    Sebastian Vettel

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel finishes fastest in second practice for the Singapore Grand Prix.

  8. 1554: 

    Pastor Maldonado is at it again. The Venezuelan spins at Turn 16 and needs another nifty spin to get him out of trouble. The Williams driver needs to rein in his enthusiasm or he's heading for a big smash.

  9. 1552: 

    Romain Grosjean's session looks to be over as he's out of the car and is stood, arms folded, in the Lotus garage with a white towel draped around his neck.

    The Frenchman is fifth fastest, but he's only done 18 laps which is just less than half the laps the rest of the field are set to complete. BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson says it looks like his car has a hydraulics problem.

  10. 1550: 

    Jean-Eric Vergne skids off the track at Turn Seven in his Toro Rosso but continues. A few minutes later, the Williams of Valtteri Bottas does exactly the same thing. Both are lucky there is run-off there.


    Ferrari: The pace is reasonable on both tyres. You don't know how much fuel the competitors have and how they manage the tyres before the runs.

  12. 1547: 

    Ferrari's Felipe Massa hits the wall in exactly the same place as Mark Webber did earlier in this session - at the penultimate corner - causing a spark, but he's able to continue.

  13. 1542: 

    Lewis Hamilton race engineer: "Why are we switching to the prime [tyre]? Engineer replies: "To give you some mileage on it." Hamilton responds: "I'm happy to stay on the tyre that we're on."


    Tristan Mann: Re 1442. That £170 fine Vettel got in first practice will really dent his bank account.

    Singapore GP

    BBC F1 presenter Suzi Perry: #singaporegp transformed under lights.

  16. 1536: 

    Pastor Maldonado has been locking up tyres, bouncing over kerbs and kissing walls all day - and largely getting away with it. But this time, he's not so lucky as yet another mistake send him skidding into the barrier to break the front wing. He keeps the engine running and is able to retreat back to the pits with his tail between his legs.

  17. 1528: 

    Lewis Hamilton joins his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg out on track for a long run, as do the two Ferraris. Expect the current times to stay pretty much the same for the rest of the session now.

  18. 1523: 

    Mercedes' Nico Rosberg has returned to the pits to refuel before heading back out on the same super-soft tyres to do a long run for a race simulation.

  19. 1517: 

    "Are you happy to come in after this lap," asks Romain Grosjean's engineer. "Nope," comes the replies. The Frenchman is clearly having too much fun out there...

  20. 1514: 

    Red Bull are giving Mark Webber's car a check for damage after his incident with the wall. Meanwhile, Romain Grosjean goes fifth fastest in the Lotus on his soft-tyre run. Jenson Button goes seventh in the McLaren, 1.5 seconds off the pace.

  21. 1511: 

    Elsewhere, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso can only manage the fifth fastest time, 1.4 seconds adrift, with Kimi Raikkonen in the Lotus a further tenth back.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "The Red Bull is a rocket ship around here, and this year it looks like it's no exception."

  23. 1510: 

    Lewis Hamilton's super-soft tyre run is only good enough for third fastest, 1.3 seconds off the pace. His Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg pushes the 2008 world champion down a place, though, as he goes third, one second adrift of Sebastian Vettel.

  24. 1507: 

    Sebastian Vettel sets a blistering pace on the super-softs, clocking a 1:44.249 to go fastest of all. His Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber hits the wall on the exit of the penultimate corner as he tries to wrestle P1 back from Vettel.

    The front right tyre kisses the wall, but the right rear gives it a right thump, sending up a spark. He continues to complete the lap to finish six tenths adrift in second but I suspect he'll be heading for the pits to get that checked out.


    Lotus: Engineer: "OK Romain, you're good to go" @RGrosjean: "YES!!" Is someone keen by any chance?"

  26. 1505: 

    Mark Webber is informed by his team that they're expecting a 1.5 second improvement in the time after switching from the medium to the super-soft tyre. No pressure, then.

  27. 1504: 

    Sebastian Vettel takes on the super-softs and heads out on track. The championship leader is followed out by Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton in the Mercedes.

  28. 1459: 

    Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo is the first man to bolt the super-soft tyre, and the Red Bull-bound Australian clocks a 1:46.406 which is good enough for second, 0.249 seconds behind Mark Webber. He was the fastest of anyone in the middle sector, clocking 40.6 seconds.

  29. 1457: 

    So Mark Webber leads from Sebastian Vettel, the Red Bull pair split by 0.25 seconds. Lewis Hamilton is next up, 0.4 seconds adrift of Webber, with Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg a further four tenths behind.

  30. 1452: 

    Sebastian Vettel responds to Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber's quick lap with one of his own, inching ahead by 0.081 seconds. But Webber hits back straight away, moving back to the top of the pile by 0.25 seconds.


    Three-time world champion and BBC 5 live analyst Sir Jackie Stewart: "I would have picked Kimi Raikkonen if I had the choice as well. For me, Ferrari know you have to have two top drivers to pick up points on a regular basis, that's where they make more money than sponsorship money. They have seen Raikkonen this year and last doing 27 races where he picked up points. That's the kind of regularity that an F1 team wants."

  32. 1449: 
    Sergio Perez

    If you squint, you can see Sergio Perez in the McLaren blasting down the start-finish straight. The Mexican is currently sixth fastest, two seconds off the pace.

  33. 1445: 

    Mark Webber's first flying lap is good'un, the Australian clocking a 1:46.489 on the medium tyre to go 0.364 seconds quicker than Red Bull team-mate Sebastian Vettel.


    Lotus: Techie Update: Brake duct adjustments for both our boys heading into #FP2. A little extra chill added... it's rather warm here you know.

  35. 1442: 

    Championship leader Sebastian Vettel, who was fined 200 euros (£170) for speeding in the pit lane during first practice, goes quickest with a 1:46.853, 1.428 seconds clear of Mercedes' Nico Rosberg.

  36. 1440: 

    It's a McLaren 1-2 at the moment with Jenson Button going quickest, 0.365 tenths quicker than team-mate Sergio Perez. Everyone out on track right now apart from Mark Webber, Fernando Alonso and Romain Grosjean.

  37. 1438: 

    Valtteri Bottas goes quickest in the Williams, clocking 1:51.501. His team-mate Pastor Maldonado gets it's wrong, bouncing across the plastic kerbs after out-braking himself. Luckily for the Venezuelan, there's some run-off so he can simply continue on his way. The floor of his car will have taken a beating, though.

  38. 1436: 

    For those who like tyre chat, we've got the medium tyres - with the white side walls - and the super-softs - with the red side walls - in action this weekend.

  39. 1433: 

    Force India's Adrian Sutil is the first man out of the pits. The German is followed out by his team-mate Paul Di Resta and the Williams of Valtteri Bottas.

  40. 1430: 
    GO! GO! GO!

    Second practice for the Singapore Grand Prix is up and running under the lights in Marina Bay!

  41. 1427: 

    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra are up and running, with James Allen and Sir Jackie Stewart, a three-time world champion, in the box. Jennie Gow and Gary Anderson are down in the pit lane.

  42. 1424: 
    Lewis Hamilton column

    In his latest BBC Sport column, Lewis Hamilton says he gets in the sauna when he arrives in Singapore to help him acclimatise.

    "It's hard to describe what it's like to drive a two-hour race in those conditions, but try thinking of what it would be like sitting in a sauna wearing a full fireproof race suit and helmet," said Hamilton.

    "If 10 is the hottest temperature of that sauna, then the Singapore race is a seven. And then you do a bit of a workout - some press-ups, running on the spot and so on."

  43. 1418: 

    To make this race happen, 108,423 metres of power cables, 240 steel pylons and approximately 1,600 light projectors are required and will be installed over a period of three months.

    The power requirement is an astonishing 3,180,00 watts with an illumination of around 3,000 lux - which is effectively four-times brighter than floodlights in most football stadiums.

  44. 1412: 

    The Marina Bay Street Circuit is the second slowest of the year, after Monaco, with an average speed of just 157kph. Only 46% of the lap is taken on full throttle, compared with over 75% at the last race in Monza, Italy.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "The big talking point here in Singapore on Friday is McLaren's desire to sign Fernando Alonso for next season, as we revealed earlier. Sir Jackie Stewart, who will be in the BBC commentary box for second practice, thinks it would be a 'mistake' for Alonso to accept McLaren's approaches. 'McLaren do need a driver of that calibre," Stewart said, 'But right now, I'd say Ferrari has a better chance of winning than McLaren.

    'If I was Alonso, I'd stay ay least another year to see how it went before leaving. Ferrari have more resources and more money than anyone. And Kimi Raikkonen (being there as Alonso's team-mate) is not going to change that.' I asked who he thought would win that battle and Stewart said: 'I think Fernando is going to be difficult to beat.'"

  46. 1407: 

    So the second session starts at 1430 BST, which is 2130 local time. That means the floodlights will be on full power for this session, carving out a golden race track that pierces through the darkness. It's quite a spectacle.

  47. 1403: 

    Lewis Hamilton was the star of the show in first practice, dancing around the 5.065km Marina Bay Street Circuit in 1:47.055 to go 0.365 second clear of the field. The 2008 world champion won this race in 2009 and could have won it last year if his gearbox didn't let him down. Can he get his sixth pole of the season and transfer that into his second win of 2013?

  48. 1400: 

    Hello, anyone there? Good, good. We've got Singapore Grand Prix second practice in Marina Bay, lit up by 1,500 halogen lamps, coming up. Buckle up, folks.

  49. 1255: 
    Lewis Hamilton

    Lewis Hamilton, sporting a new helmet design this weekend, is looking mighty at the moment. Can he maintain his advantage over the Red Bulls in second practice? Join me from 1400 BST to find out. See you in a bit.

  50. 1250: 

    Here's Andrew Benson's first practice report. May I also suggest watching this video by my colleague Tom Bowker on what makes Singapore's unique night race so special.

  51. 1240: 

    Lewis Hamilton is looking rather good round here, but as usual those Red Bulls are right up there at the front. Ferrari are a bit off the pace, with Fernando Alonso seventh and Felipe Massa 12th, but there's still a long way to go. The second practice session starts at 1430 BST.

  52. 1236: 

    1) Hamilton 2) Webber 3) Vettel 4) Rosberg 5) Raikkonen 6) Grosjean 7) Alonso 8) Perez 9) Vergne 10) Gutierrez 11) Maldonado

    12) Massa 13) Bottas 14) Button 15) Di Resta 16) Sutil 17) Hulkenberg 18) Ricciardo 19) Bianchi 20) Chilton 21) Van der Garde 22) Pic

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "I'd like to see what Ferrari come up with in the next session, they're playing around with the jigsaw puzzle of bits trying to find the right set up - and I think they'll be able to join Mercedes and Red Bull at the front."

  54. 1233: 

    Williams development driver and BBC 5 live analyst Susie Wolff: "The real battle at the front will be between Mercedes and Red Bull and it looks like Ferrari and Lotus have a bit of work to do to catch up."

  55. 1230: 
    Lewis Hamilton

    Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton finishes fastest in first practice for the Singapore Grand Prix.

  56. 1223: 

    Sebastian Vettel only manages to improve by a couple of thousandths so stays third, 0.878 seconds off the pace. Giedo Van Der Garde gives the wall a bit of a slap, the second time he's done it in this session but gets away with it again. Will he be so lucky third time around?

  57. 1222: 
    Sebastian Vettel

    Sebastian Vettel backs off in the final few corners and then puts the hammer down out of the sweeping penultimate turn to begin a flying lap. The German needs to improve by nine tenths of a second to take P1 off Lewis Hamilton.


    Mercedes: The two cars are now back out for a final run this session. Working to get brakes and tyres up to temp for timed laps.

  59. 1220: 

    With 10 minutes to go, Hamilton leads Webber, Vettel, Rosberg, Raikkonen, Grosjean, Alonso, Perez, Vergne and Gutierrez.

  60. 1218: 

    Kimi Raikkonen spins down at Turn 10, but there's run-off there handily, so he simply spins the car round and rejoins without any issues. The Finn is currently fifth fastest, 1.299 seconds off the pace.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "Ferrari have got a new diffuser on the car and it is made up of three different parts, rather than as one. The area just inside the rear tyres is critical and they are doing a bit of development work there, trying to change the characteristics of it. We may see it slightly different on Saturday."

  62. 1214: 

    Romain Grosjean goes seventh quickest, 1.599 seconds off the pace but just two tenths adrift of his Lotus team-mate Kimi Raikkonen who has completed 12 laps to the Frenchman's seven.

  63. 1208: 

    Romain Grosjean has had the least productive morning of all. The Frenchman has yet to set a lap time, but having had a steering rack changed, he's now out and about in his Lotus.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "Now that the second Ferrari seat has been filled by Kimi Raikkonen, attention has focused on Lotus. Sauber's Nico Hulkenberg is a strong favourite to move there, but the team have also had talks with Ferrari's Felipe Massa, while Romain Grosjean may well be retained. Team boss Eric Boullier also said Lotus had some wildcard options."

  65. 1204: 

    McLaren's Sergio Perez gets his braking wrong, but he's very lucky that there's some run-off road for him to coast into. A half-doughnut later and he's back on track.


    Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton: "This new surface on the track is twice as grippy [as last year]."

  67. 1201: 

    Expect lap times to be at least one second faster this year following the removal of the Singapore Sling chicane. So we'll have a new lap record in the race on Sunday.

    With a little over 30 minutes remaining, Lewis Hamilton leads Mark Webber, Sebastian Vettel, Nico Rosberg and Kimi Raikkonen.

  68. 1159: 

    The floodlights are on at dusk in Singapore. The cars do look awesome under the lights. Lewis Hamilton has climbed back into P1, the 2008 world champion clocking 1:47.055 to go nearly four tenths clear. The Briton was looking good for victory in Singapore last year before a gearbox failure ended his race.

  69. 1155: 

    Mark Webber is back on top, the Red Bull driver going 0.173 seconds quicker than Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes. His team-mate Sebastian Vettel is currently sixth, one second adrift.

  70. 1152: 

    Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton sets three purple - fastest of all - sector times to go fastest with a 1:47.872. The track is improving all the time, of course, as more rubber is laid down to improve the grip.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "Lewis Hamilton's view on the decision to pair Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso at Ferrari was much sought, following his tumultuous season with the Spaniard at McLaren in 2007. Hamilton admitted he was as interested as anyone to see how it panned out: 'You've got two of the best drivers in one team at Ferrari. It's interesting to see the dynamics. I'll sit back and watch.' He said he felt the pairing had replaced him and Nico Rosberg as the strongest driver line-up in F1 but he played down the prospects for fireworks, saying he felt Alonso was a changed man these days. 'I don't know him that well but I feel we have both grown and matured a lot,' Hamilton said. 'Our relationship has improved quite a lot and he's had a great relationship with Felipe and I assume he will do the same with Kimi.'"

  72. 1147: 

    Nico Rosberg goes quickest now, clocking a 1:48.684 in the Mercedes, but Mark Webber then slices three tenths off that to reclaim top spot. Lewis Hamilton goes third, 0.8 seconds off the pace. Reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel is seventh fastest, 1.87 seconds adrift with Kimi Raikkonen ninth.

  73. 1144: 

    Valtteri Bottas goes quickest with a 1:49.510 in the Williams, but he's bumped down to second as Mark Webber takes P1 by dipping down into the 1m48s. The Red Bull driver has fluorescent yellow flo-viz paint splattered on the left hand-side of his car.


    Mercedes: Both drivers head out, lots of radio updates on brake temps and traffic as they make their way round.


    Four-time world champion Alain Prost on where Sebastian Vettel would rank if he wins a fourth world title this year: "He's better [than me] because he would be a four-time world champion much younger than when I achieved it. He's ready to beat the records. He really deserves that."

  76. 1140: 

    Sergio Perez improves again, clocking a 1:50.103 to go 0.829 seconds clear at the top with Pastor Maldonado second and Esteban Gutierrez third. Both Red Bulls, Ferraris, Mercedes and Lotuses are still in the garage.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "There is a significant change to the Marina Bay circuit for this year's Singapore Grand Prix. The old, clumsy chicane at Turn 10, where drivers were often launched over the high kerbs if they made a mistake, has been turned into a left-handed corner. 'It's what we wanted as drivers, to have a different corner,' said McLaren's Jenson Button, a director of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association. 'We felt the chicane was not made for an F1 car really.

    All the safety tests have been done with the run-off area and it all looks OK. It's just when you run round it looks quite tight but hopefully in a racing car it won't feel like that. You have to slow the car down a lot anyway because you have the right-hander afterwards so you have to position the car and hopefully our apex speed won't be too fast there.'"

  78. 1137: 

    Caterham's Giedo van der Garde is pushing his luck out there at the moment, the Dutchman kissing the barriers with both wheels on the exit of the penultimate corner but he gets away with it. Lucky boy.


    Four-time world champion Alain Prost: "It is my first time here and I like to see the modern race. There is a different ambience with people coming late in the evening and everyone enjoys it. It is more relaxed here.

    "Kimi going to Ferrari is good for Formula 1. It is good for the fans who want to see two top drivers in a competitive team, fighting for wins and the championship. I hope it will work, it may work but they are two different personalities. It will be difficult if problems arise. We want to see a nice fight on the track though."

  80. 1134: 

    Away from the track, a German court decision on whether to try F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone on bribery charges has been delayed until next year.

    The Munich state court said in a statement that it is waiting for additional responses that Ecclestone's lawyers have promised to charges of bribery and incitement to breach of trust.

    It also said that the composition of the panel of judges considering the case will shortly change and so a decision "can no longer be expected this year".


    Force India: One of the main issues here in Singapore is temperatures. We start with a high cooling level and monitor the situation as the weekend goes.

  82. 1131: 

    Sergio Perez goes quickest with a 1:53.245, four seconds clear of the Caterham of Giedo Van Der Garde.

  83. 1129: 

    Hurrah, Sergio Perez has come out to play. And he's not messing around as the Mexican immediately starts a flying lap.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "Ferrari have a new diffuser, a new front wing and a new rear wing. They are pushing hard to win some races. It's a 53-point gap to Vettel but all it takes is a crash at the first corner - which hasn't happened to him for a long time - and Alonso is right back in it. There are a lot of points still up for grabs in the final seven races."

  85. 1122: 

    I'm afraid the fans still have an empty track to stare at. McLaren's Sergio Perez was just fastening his helmet in place, though, so that might change shortly.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "Mark Webber's Formula 1 career is ticking down into its last seven races and the Australian has admitted he has been struggling to motivate himself in his final season - although has said this should be kept in context. 'I'm using every trick I can to stay motivated for another few months,' he says. 'That's not too much of a challenge, but you are now using all of those things to finish as strongly as possible. I'm not saying: 'Let's fast-forward the last seven races' - I want to do bloody well, that is important to me.' And he says he still wants to win a race if he can. 'It would be nice to hit the middle step before the year is out and there is no reason why we can't. Having to talk about this is my 10th race, ninth race, eighth race, seventh race - it's boring the hell out of me to be honest. I've made the decision, done. I'm finished in Brazil. Thanks very much. You're not going to finish your career if you are full of motivation and loving all aspects of the work. That's part of the decision. Lots of things help you come to the decision where you want a change of scenery and to do something else.'"

  87. 1116: 

    It's all quiet out on track right now as the mechanics make various tweaks on the cars. Over at Marussia, both Max Chilton and Jules Bianchi are out of their cars, overalls rolled down, and chilling out in the team's hospitality unit. Chaps, you do know the track is opening for testing, right?


    Flora_F1: Monaco is simply beautiful but Singapore is definitely spectacular! I'd say the rockstar of the calendar!

  89. 1112: 

    On that note, this will be the first time Ferrari will have two world champions in their line up since 1953. Quite a change in strategy for the Italians, then. Both Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen are back in their respective garages having done their installation laps.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "The F1 paddock is still buzzing from the news last week that Kimi Raikkonen will drive for Ferrari next season, and the explosive possibilities of his partnership with Fernando Alonso. But in a sensational twist here it has emerged that the partnership may never happen. McLaren are hoping to benefit from Alonso's unsettled relationship with Ferrari and are trying to persuade him to re-join them. It's far from certain to happen, but it's certainly an intriguing possibility."


    Force India: A bit of a cloud cover over Marina Bay. It's been dry yesterday, perhaps some rain in store for later in the day?

  92. 1109: 

    Reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel has popped out for a spin. His Red Bull mechanics swamp the car as he returns to the pits, pushing him back into the garage and quickly getting the tyre blankets on and cooling fans switched back on. On the other side of the garage, the team give Mark Webber the green light. The Australian flicks down his visor and peels out of the garage for his first foray on the track this weekend.

    BBC Radio 5 live pit-lane reporter Jennie Gow

    "Looking into the McLaren garage, it appears Jenson Button has a new helmet. Sergio Perez has been playing football, his usual routine before getting into the car. I told him not to hit me with the ball, and what does he do? Smack!"

  94. 1103: 

    Nico Rosberg is out and about in his Mercedes, as is Ferrari's Fernando Alonso. Lewis Hamilton does a practice start at the end of the pit lane before heading out for his installation lap.


    Williams development driver and BBC 5 live analyst Susie Wolff: "This race is gruelling. If you talk to a lot of drivers, they say this is tougher race on the calendar. (Williams') Pastor (Maldonado) lost 4 kilos last year. Here, there is no break on track with lots of barriers on exits of corners. You can't run wide and you can't make any errors."

  96. 1100: 
    GO! GO! GO!

    First practice for the Singapore Grand Prix is up and running, with the two Marussias and Williams out and about nice an early. It's 1800 local time, so it's still light out there and not quite time for the hundreds of floodlights to be called into action.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "After Lewis Hamilton won the Hungarian Grand Prix at the end of July, there were hopes the Mercedes driver might be able to mount a late title challenge. Those faded with a third place in Belgium and a poor weekend, caused by a mistake in qualifying, in Italy. Mercedes struggled with the low downforce requirements of Spa and Monza but back on a high-downforce track, Hamilton is confident he can be in the mix for victory this weekend. 'I'm just looking forward to putting the other package on the car and seeing what we can do alongside up against the Red Bulls. Hopefully we've made some slight improvements to the car so it'll be generally better this weekend.'"

  98. 1055: 

    Ben Edwards is up and running in the BBC Radio 5 commentary box, with Williams development driver Susie Wolff alongside him. Gary Anderson and Jennie Gow are down in a hot and humid pit lane. You can listen to them by clicking the link at the top right of this page.

  99. 1052: 

    Ever wondered how you transform one of the world's most densely populated cities into a twisting street circuit capable of hosting Formula 1's one and only night race? Well you'll need 25,000 people, 4,395 safety barriers, 10km of debris fencing, 108,423m of power cables, 240 steel pylons and 1,600 light projectors for starters. Check out this feature on the F1 pages for more info.

  100. 1048: 

    Only three men have won in Singapore - and all three are champions. Lewis Hamilton triumphed in 2009, Fernando Alonso in 2008 and 2010 and Sebastian Vettel in the past two years. A third successive victory for Vettel will all but end his rivals hopes of catching him in the title race.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "There's no doubt who is the favourite coming into the race - that man Sebastian Vettel. Interestingly, when asked who his main rivals would be, the Red Bull driver did not even mention his main title rival, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, picking Mercedes alone, despite their lack of competitiveness in the last two races in Belgium and Italy. 'I think Mercedes will be strong. (In) Monza I don't know what happened but especially in qualifying trim it was a surprise to see Mercedes were a bit behind. We didn't mind. But I think here they will be quite strong. Lewis (Hamilton) and Nico (Rosberg) are quite strong on street circuits. Lewis was very competitive here last year and we were fighting for the grand prix before he retired and Nico won Monaco, so they will be up there."

  102. 1045: 
    Romain Grosjean

    The Singapore Sling, once described by Lewis Hamilton as the "worst in Formula 1", will be no more this year after organisers have done away with it. I'm not talking about the famous cocktail of course, but the vicious chicane, which broke many a car - and sent many others into the wall - with it's hard and high kerbs, has been removed. In its place is a flowing single-apex left-hand bend. May those kerbs rest in peace.

  103. 1042: 

    Last year the race attracted around 260,000 people, with 6% of visiting from the UK. I'm guessing there's a fair amount of you in position once more this year, so do send us your stories about the place and any chance-driver meetings plus pictures via Twitter.

    Many say Singapore is fast becoming the greatest F1 spectacle of them all - even better than Monaco. Do you agree? Tweet us your thoughts - plus any F1-related chat - using the #bbcf1 hashtag on Twitter or by texting 81111 (UK only).

    Oh and if you're using SMS, please, please, please, put your name - and even your location if you want - on those messages - or they'll be confined to a life in our inbox without ever seeing the light of day. Ta.

  104. 1039: 

    There's a lot to love about the Singapore Grand Prix, from the eye-catching images of Formula 1 cars flashing past under the floodlights to it's 100% record of always featuring a safety car to spice up the race.

    For the drivers, it's a pretty intense challenge, with races almost always lasting close to the two-hour limit in 30C heat and 70% humidity. Fluid intake is crucial, as they can expect to lose up to three kilos of fluid during the race.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Singapore:

    "It's not quite dark yet here on this the southern tip of the Malay peninsula but this part of the day is one of the many special aspects of this unique race. As the sun goes down and the lights around the Marina Bay track come up, a special sparkle seems to come into the air, a sense heightened by the intense, tropical atmosphere. It's a magical time of day at a wonderful event, one that seems to be among the favourites of almost everyone in Formula 1."

  106. 1036: 

    After the FIA and Bernie Ecclestone giveth by spreading the first 12 grands prix across six months, they taketh by placing seven flyaway races in just 10 weekends to end the season. The first of which is, of course, Sunday's Singapore Grand Prix, before we head to Korea, Japan, India, Abu Dhabi, America and Brazil. Just think of the jet lag...

  107. 1033: 
    Singapore Grand Prix

    Good morning - or good evening depending on where you are - and welcome to our live coverage of Formula 1's first and only night race - the Singapore Grand Prix around the streets of Marina Bay.

    We've got two practice sessions coming up for you, the first of which starts at 1100 BST, the perfect remedy for a late-morning dip in concentration. That'll last 90 minutes and will be followed by another one at 1330. The weekend will be here sooner than you think...

  108. 1030: 
    Singapore Grand Prix

    The team behind the Singapore Grand Prix were sat in Bernie Ecclestone's offices in London waiting for the F1 chief to join them so they could put the finishing touches to a contract to secure the race.

    According to the event's organiser, Colin Syn, Ecclestone stretched his arm into the room, switched the lights off and then flicked them on again saying: "I want a night race."

    Eighteen months later, Ecclestone got his wish - as is usually the case - and six years on, the event is considered to be one of the most loved and most successful on the Formula 1 calendar.

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Formula 1 World Championship 2014

Position Driver Team Pts
1 Germany N Rosberg Mercedes 238
2 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes 216
3 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull 166
4 Spain F Alonso Ferrari 121
5 Finland V Bottas Williams 122
6 Germany S Vettel Red Bull 106
7 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India 70
8 Great Britain J Button McLaren 70
9 Brazil F Massa Williams 55
10 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari 40
11 Denmark K Magnussen McLaren 43
12 Mexico S Perez Force India 37
13 France J Vergne Toro Rosso 11
14 France R Grosjean Lotus 8
15 Russia D Kvyat Toro Rosso 8
16 France J Bianchi Marussia 2
17 Germany A Sutil Sauber 0
18 Sweden M Ericsson Caterham 0
19 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus 0
20 Mexico E Gutierrez Sauber 0
21 Great Britain M Chilton Marussia 0
22 Japan K Kobayashi Caterham 0


After 53 of 53 laps
Position Driver Team

Race completed

1 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes
2 Germany N Rosberg Mercedes
3 Brazil F Massa Williams
4 Finland V Bottas Williams
5 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull
6 Germany S Vettel Red Bull
7 Denmark K Magnussen McLaren
8 Mexico S Perez Force India
9 Great Britain J Button McLaren
10 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari
11 Russia D Kvyat Toro Rosso
12 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India
13 France J Vergne Toro Rosso
14 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus
15 Germany A Sutil Sauber
16 France R Grosjean Lotus
17 Japan K Kobayashi Caterham
18 France J Bianchi Marussia
19 Mexico E Gutierrez Sauber
20 Sweden M Ericsson Caterham
21 Spain F Alonso (ret.) Ferrari
22 Great Britain M Chilton (ret.) Marussia

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