Hamilton keen to move on from ‘pretty rubbish’ Singapore GP after pair of errors leave him P9
Four-time Singapore Grand Prix winner Lewis Hamilton admitted that the 2022 race in the Lion City wasn’t one he’d remember with fondness, as early hopes of challenging for victory morphed into a P9 finish at the flag after a pair of costly errors.
Starting on the second row of the grid in P3 alongside Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, it was the Spaniard who won out in the pair’s first corner battle, Hamilton taking to the run-off before settling in behind Sainz and complaining that he’d been forced off by the red car.
But then a Lap 33 error saw Hamilton stuff his Mercedes W13 heavily into the Turn 7 wall, forcing him to pit for a new nose section. Recovering from that and running in P8, Hamilton was then challenging Sebastian Vettel on the last lap of the foreshortened race when he slid off track, allowing Max Verstappen to slip past as Hamilton settled for ninth.
“I don’t really have much emotion at the moment,” said Hamilton after the race. “It’s a pretty flat, pretty poor day – a pretty rubbish day to be honest. But I feel okay – I’m just looking forward to tomorrow.
“I think we started off with a pretty decent weekend, just really, really unfortunate at the end. I was trying – obviously, it was difficult to overtake, and that lock-up into Turn 7, when those things happen, your heart sinks a little bit. But you get back up again and you try and I tried to get past Seb but it was wet on the inside, so when you fail you get up and try again.”
Asked if he’d felt the podium had been within his grasp as he closed in on Sainz ahead of his Lap 33 error in the wet-dry encounter, Hamilton replied: “We would have potentially undercut him, maybe. But it was a battle of not undercut but who got on the slicks first, and it would have been slice and dice.
“So, I was hoping for that and that was what I was working towards but that went all out the fricking window when I locked up. So, my apologies to the team but we live and we learn, and I’ll recover.”
With Hamilton’s team mate George Russell finishing P14 after a trying race that he started from the pit lane – after taking on new power unit elements without the FIA technical delegate’s authority to do so – Mercedes’ two points from the Singapore Grand Prix represented their worst result of the season, as second-placed Ferrari opened the gap to 66 points after Charles Leclerc and Sainz finished P2 and P3 respectively.