It was Spaniard Carlos Sainz’s on Sunday (September 17) and it culminated perfectly with a second career victory.
Sainz, who dominated practice and qualifying, proved his speed also translated to race pace with a win in Marina Bay Street Circuit in Singapore.
It was the iconic scarlet red of Ferrari at the top of the podium ending Red Bull’s unbeaten season in glorious fashion.
Starting pole for the second straight race, Sainz made good on the position and won a wire to wire victory. His Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc finished a place behind his starting grid position and ended in fourth. Young Brit Lando Norris made good on a fantastic weekend by finishing second behind his former McLaren teammate. Norris, who was two tenths off Sainz’ pace in qualifying, kept the Spaniard in his sights after moving up two places. This is Norris’ third podium placing this year.
It was a record extending 196th career podium for seven-time champ Sir Lewis Hamilton who finished third for the Silver Arrows of Mercedes. After teammate George Russell, who was poised to create a battle for the win after a blistering qualification round, clipped a corner and went into the barrier, it was a fast charging Hamilton who rounded out the podium, having already overtaken Leclerc to improve his fifth place qualification position.
After a disastrous showing, Red Bull still managed to salvage the weekend with both drivers finishing in the points. Despite being a notoriously difficult track on which to overtake, championship leader Max Verstappen moved from eleventh to sixth which later upgraded to fifth with Russell’s crash. His teammate, Sergio Perez also moved up several places from thirteenth and ended in eighth. This was an impressive run for the Red Bulls considering the team saw both drivers dropping out of qualifying in round 2 and starting outside of the points on race day. Both Pierre Gasly of Alpine and Norris’ McLaren team-mate Oscar Piastri improved significantly finishing sixth and seventh respectively after starting twelfth and seventeenth.
Liam Lawson finished nineth and could well cause some personnel considerations for AlphaTauri, with an incredible weekend in just his 3rd week after being called in to replace an injured Daniel Riccardo.
The season continues next weekend in Suzuka, Japan.