Unfair to Pass Hamilton When Held Up: Verstappen

Formula One World Championship

Formula One World Championship

Max Verstappen has revealed an engine cut-out cost him a shot at beating Lewis Hamilton to Singapore Grand Prix pole, after what he believes was his best Formula 1 qualifying.

The result was a fourth win in five races for Hamilton, arguably all of which Vettel could and perhaps should have won himself.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen remained a lingering threat for much of the race - and reeled in Hamilton as they encountered lapped cars mid-race - but ultimately settled for a fine second place. The British driver had nailed an extraordinary lap to take pole.

The good news for Vettel is that, as in 2010 and 2012, he has the fastest auto on the grid this year. It would nearly certainly give up hope of gaining track position at the time, but it would allow him a run at Hamilton on fresher tyres at the end of the race. Given the latent performance in his Ferrari, and his form at this circuit over the years, it is entirely achievable regardless of the mistake on Friday night.

"Qualifying is almost as important here as in Monaco so a little bit of work to do for tomorrow".

"The only thing I can say is it was a great qualifying, I think the best I have ever done and also the auto was working really well". Mercedes pitted Hamilton moments later, and when Vettel came back out he was still behind Hamilton and lost more time getting past Perez. "I think there were also other races where we shouldn't have done so well and we did. Lewis got the job done but we gave him a auto he could do that with". They still have the quicker vehicle yet are failing to exploit it and the German is becoming frustrated as the title looks to be slipping away.

Pole in 2017 was set by Sebastian Vettel - he took third place this time around - with a 1:39.491 but such is the improvement between years that this time would have seen him qualify P15 in 2018.

He had passed Verstappen for second place on the opening lap but the team's early pitstop in an attempt to undercut Hamilton did not pay off.

It proved to be one incident on a dismal day for Force India.

"It was a great qualifying", said Verstappen, the youngest driver to win an F1 race when he was 18.

"Normally in the race you have to turn down the power", he said.

"With the way we raced we didn't have a chance". It's largely due to how we made a decision to race and which tyres for how many laps.

"We were too late again", he bawled. He was beaten to pole by Hamilton, with Raikkonen sixth after the team couldn't get him back out on track quickly enough with the end of the session approaching.

The trio were closely-matched throughout but never seriously battled for position. I mean, nobody was happy after Monza, but think about the rest of the team.

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