Singapore Grand Prix: Vettel takes 49th career pole on the streets on Singapore
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News September 16, 2017 Updated: 11:42 PM
MARINA BAY, Singapore — Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel pumped up Ferrari fans everywhere when he took his 49th career pole ahead of Red Bull drivers Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo as Mercedes struggled and was unable to make it to the front row for Sunday's race.
"I needed to get it absolutely right. I was very relieved when I crossed the line. I looked at the screens behind and I waited for the call. I knew that Daniel was behind me so... I was very, very happy obviously," said Vettel.
"I’m a bit disappointed to be honest. Seb’s last lap was strong and we couldn’t run with that. That pace was good for us in Q3 and it seems like he did most of his time in the first sector. I didn’t really know what else we could do. If we get the start right tomorrow then we can put some pressure on him through our strategy," said Ricciardo.
Verstappen and Ricciardo finished second and third after a strong performance in the early practice sessions. The Marina Bay Circuit seems to favor the Red Bull chassis which could give them the strongest chance to fight in tomorrow's race.
“All weekend has been a good build up, getting faster and faster and finding a smooth rhythm so to come away with second is a really good result," said Verstappen.
Vettel's teammate Kimi Raikkonen finished fourth with the silver arrows on the back foot with Lewis Hamilton in fifth and teammate Valtteri Bottas in sixth after the two struggled for most of the weekend.
"I gave it everything today but I could not get any more out of the car, I squeezed it until it was dry. There are no points for today, so we will focus on doing the best job we can tomorrow and remain hopeful," said Hamilton.
Renault's Nico Hulkenberg took seventh followed by the the McLarens of Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandorrne in eighth and ninth as the streets of Singapore may provide a good result for the team in tomorrow's race.
Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz finished tenth as the Renault bound driver continues to pull positive result's for the team.
Hulkenberg's teammate Jolyon Palmer was 11th after the rear of his car stepped out costing him valuable time. Force India driver Sergio Perez qualified 12th while Daniil Kvyat took 13th and was just 0.5s from his teammate in the second Toro Rosso.
Perez' teammate Esteban Ocon will start 14th with Haas drivers Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen in 15th and 16th.
Felipe Massa finished 17th and was 0.714s ahead of his teammate Lance Stroll in 18th. Stroll spent the practice sessions struggling with balance which carried on into qualifying, and Massa sustained a puncture after making contact with the wall.
Finishing out the bottom of the order were Sauber driver Pascal Wehrlein in 19th who said "As a team, we are all working hard to make progress.” Wehrlein finished ahead of teammate Marcus Ericsson in 20th.