Lewis Hamilton grabs third after Russell crashes out in dramatic F1 Singapore Grand Prix as Sainz ends Red Bull run

CARLOS SAINZ won a thrilling Singapore GP as Max Verstappen’s winning run came to an end.

The Ferrari driver, who had taken pole the previous day, held off a strong challenge from British trio, Lando Norris, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.

GettyCarlos Sainz ended Red Bull’s winning run with a victory in the Singapore Grand Prix[/caption]

ReutersHe celebrated his victory with the fans[/caption]

GettyLewis Hamilton finished in third place[/caption]

AFPThe Mercedes driver was just behind his compatriot Lando Norris[/caption]

A late mistake from Russell cost him a place on the podium as Norris and Hamilton finished in P2 and P3 respectively.

Both Sainz and Charles Leclerc made an excellent start while Hamilton squeezed past Russell and Norris but he left it too late to brake.

Hamilton was forced to take evasive action and ran wide into Turn One and when he re-joined the track he was running in third place – much to Russell and Norris‘ frustration.

Both drivers radioed their teams calling for Hamilton to allow them to pass as he had gained a clear advantage, despite his own pleas that he “got pushed wide by George”.

Eventually the seven-time world champion did yield and allowed both his Mercedes teammate and the McLaren to pass, dropping him back to fifth.

Meanwhile, Verstappen had made his way up from 11th on the grid to eighth but his progress was soon stopped by Esteban Ocon, as the Red Bull man was held behind his Alpine.

Ferrari opted to protect Sainz’s lead by sacrificing Leclerc and telling him to slowdown and block Russell from performing the undercut with the pitstops.

The race was turned on its head on lap 20 when Logan Sargeant duffed his Williams into the barriers, breaking off his front wing.

GettyLogan Sargeant saw his front wing come off in a collision with the barriers[/caption]

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As the American made his way back to the pits, with debris dropping from his car, the race stewards deployed the safety car which threatened to shuffle the pack.

Both Verstappen and Sergio Perez stayed out on track while the leaders all pitted for fresh tyres.

A slow stop for Leclerc hurt the Ferrari man’s track position and when they returned to the track the running order was Sanz, Verstappen, Russell, Perez, Norris, Leclerc and Hamilton.

AFPA slow stop for Leclerc hurt his track position[/caption]

On lap 24, Russell passed Verstappen at turn 16 while Hamilton almost leapfrogged Norris and Perez.

Norris recovered to move into third while Hamilton moved up to fourth-place on lap 27 when he passed Verstappen at turn seven.

The British trio running behind the Ferrari continued to push with Russell keen to remind his team over the radio, saying: “I want to go for this win!”

Russell continued to bide his time, with Sainz doing just enough to hold position out in front.

But there was another twist when Esteban Ocon conked out on lap 43 to mark an unhappy end to his race on his 27th birthday.

His stricken Alpine prompted a Virtual Safety Car and Mercedes decided to pit both Russell and Hamilton for fresh tyres from fourth and fifth with just 18 laps to go.

Both drivers returned to the track in the same position but having lost ground on Leclerc, who was running in third.

However, with their new tyres they were given the all-clear to hunt down the top three, with Russell having to make up a 17.6 second gap to race leader Sainz.

He passed Leclerc on lap 54 with Hamilton next up to pass the Ferrari driver with Norris next in the Merc duo’s sights.

It set up a thrilling finale as the four cars were separated by less than two seconds with Sainz being smart to keep Norris just enough behind him.

He kept the gap under a second so that the McLaren man had the benefit of DRS to fend off the threat from Russell and Hamilton.

Russel slammed into the barriers after a last ditch attempt to squeeze further up the standings

The race went down to the wire and just as Russell tried one last bold attempt to squeeze past Norris, he bit off too much and ended up in the barriers at turn 10.

It put him out of the race on the last lap, promoting Hamilton to third behind Norris and Sainz.

Leclerc was fourth and Verstappen came home in fifth as his bid to win an 11th straight race was ended.

GettyMax Verstappen has seen an end to his incre3dible winning streak[/caption]

GettyCarlos Sainz wound up as the winner[/caption]

GettyLando Norris finished in second place with Hamilton third[/caption]

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