Ricciardo eyes another Singapore podium

16 September, 2017, 01:22 | Author: Laura Christensen
  • Formula One- Singapore Grand Prix 2017- Practice- Singapore

"If we can get the vehicle in a place we're comfortable in, then I think we'll definitely be strong", said the Briton. "Whatever happens along the way happens". We have a lot of races, a lot of time to get points, and then we will count them at the end.

Mercedes have a chequered history at the Singapore track, winning a year ago with retired champion Nico Rosberg, but failing to even finish on the podium in 2015.

"Red Bull will be fast and it is known that it is not going to be the easiest of weekends for us", said Hamilton yesterday.

Red Bull started the season well off the pace compared to Mercedes and Ferrari, but Hamilton would not be surprised to see Ricciardo or Verstappen clinch the team's first pole of the year in Singapore on Saturday.

It's a mindset which has served Hamilton particularly well since the summer break, but it won't be until Friday practice that Mercedes truly begin to get a feel on whether the 2017 Singapore GP weekend is likely to be more about damage limitation or race-winning opportunity.

Often this year Ferrari has appeared to have a slight edge over Mercedes on race pace, but the German team's ability to use a quicker engine mode in qualifying has often given it crucial track position going into the grand prix.

Hamilton and Mercedes, meanwhile, have a chequered history at Singapore.

But Singapore is probably the track that most closely fits that bill, even if the headline results in that period aren't almost as bad as you might expect.

"We have worked as hard as we can to understand the vehicle and we come here in full attack".

With such onus being put on the red team to walk the weekend, there is the expectation for Vettel to regain the lead of the standings - if he is to be the victor for Ferrari.

McLaren has consistently proclaimed it has one of the best chassis on the grid, something it has declared repeatedly during its struggles with Honda's underpowered engine. "On the surface, Singapore is the kind of circuit that should favour both Ferrari and Red Bull", said Wolff here Wednesday.

Such was the volume of the victory in Monza, that the power of Mercedes AMG is enough to highlight their presence as a team that can win the championship.

McLaren and Honda stole the spotlight from the championship battle early in the weekend before finally confirming news of their divorce on Friday. Speaking to reporters on Thursday before confirmation of the split, though, the Spaniard remained tight-lipped on his future. So there's always a possibility and I do everything I can to try and get another win.

"I will think what is the best option", the 36-year-old double champion said.

Bottas, who received a vote of confidence from Mercedes this week after signing a one-year contract extension for 2018, said yesterday: "It's definitely possible (for a win). every single race I go to is always a chance for the win, and that makes a big difference to how you approach the weekend".


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