The Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix is here again! If you’re clueless about who’s who in the sport, we’ve got you covered. By Jagdish Singh
The 8th edition of the Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix is coming up this weekend, and judging by the past editions, we are in for another exciting race this weekend. With just 7 races left for the season, the teams and their drivers will be looking to collect more points and climb up the rankings. We take a look at 5 drivers who will be competing for victory on Sunday, and another 5 up and coming drivers who may spring a few surprises along the way.
5 favourites for the Singapore Grand Prix
1. Lewis Hamilton
The two-time defending Formula 1 World Champion comes to Singapore in fine form, having won 7 of the 12 races this season, including 3 out of the last 4. Definitely the man to beat, he has won the Singapore Grand Prix twice, once last year and once more back in 2009. Currently leading the 2015 drivers’ championship, Hamilton will be looking for another win in this race to widen the points’ gap with his teammate and closest rival Rosberg. The frosty relationship between the once close friends has been brewing since 2014, and Hamilton revealed that the rivalry is so deep that should he not win the title, he would like to see anyone but Rosberg win it. Not something the bosses at the Mercedes team would want to hear, but for us fans, it promises to be an exciting battle on the track.
Odds: The bookies favourite for the race, you can bet on Hamilton winning the Singapore Grand Prix at odds of 1.53.
2. Nico Rosberg
The German driver comes into the race this weekend having won 3 races this season. Second in the 2015 drivers’ championship, Rosberg will be looking for another victory to close the 53 point gap that his rival Hamilton has on him. Continuing the war of words between himself and Hamilton, Rosberg describes his British teammate as “irrelevant.” History is against Rosberg though, as he has not previously won in Marina Bay, and mechanical issues caused him to retire after 14 laps of the 2014 Singapore Grand Prix. However, with 10 podium finishes this season, Rosberg definitely has his hopes up.
Odds: Neutrals will want Rosberg to close the point gap on Hamilton so that we have an exciting end to the season. Bookies have Rosberg at odds of 3.75.
3. Sebastian Vettel
The 4-time world champion stands a good chance at the Singapore Grand Prix, where he has had much success, having won 3 previous races here from 2011-2013. Vettel also holds the lap record for the Marina Bay Street Circuit, which he set in 2013. Currently 3rd in the 2015 drivers’ championship, with 2 race victories this season, his Ferrari has been the closest competitor to the Mercedes stronghold.
Odds: If you fancy Vettel to continue his fine form in Singapore, bookies are offering odds of 8.00 for Vettel to win.
4. Kimi Raikkonen
Nicknamed “The Ice-Man, ” Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen is one of the more experienced and older drivers on the grid. He has endured a difficult 2015 season due to multiple technical issues with his car, and has only finished on the podium once. However, he recently signed a new contract extension with Ferrari last month, and after a strong showing in Italy a couple of weeks ago, he will be looking to reward his bosses with another strong performance at Marina Bay.
Odds: In the heat of Singapore, “The Ice-Man” can be backed at odds of 17.00.
5. Felipe Massa
Another experienced driver on the grid, Felipe Massa has been making good use of his Williams car during the season. With some consistent performances and 2 podium finishes during the season so far, he finds himself 4th in the drivers’ championship. Coming into the race off a 3rd place finish in Italy in the last round, Massa will be looking to challenge for victory this weekend.
Odds: Those who fancy a huge upset and love taking a risky bet can get Massa at odds of 67.00
5 drivers to look out for in the future
1. Daniel Ricciardo
The current Red Bull Racing driver has been on the grid for the past 3 years, but only had a real breakthrough season in 2014, in which 3 race victories and 8 podium finishes saw him take 3rd place overall in the drivers’ championship. It was a surprise to many that Ricciardo managed to outperform his then teammate Vettel. Big things are expected of the Australian, and he is expected to win a world championship soon.
2. Daniil Kvyat
The 21 year-old Russian is still considered a rookie amongst the drivers as this is only his second full season in Formula 1 racing. The Red Bull Racing driver earned his first ever podium finish earlier this season as he came in 2nd at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Currently 7th in the drivers’ championship, Kvyat is just entering the start of his racing career, and it will come as no surprise if one the big teams come calling for his signature soon enough.
3. Valtteri Bottas
Another driver in his 3rd year as a full time Formula 1 driver, Bottas will be looking to make a similar impact in the sport like his countryman Raikkonen. With 7 podium finishes in his career so far, he finished 4th overall in the drivers’ championship in 2014, beating the likes of former world champions Vettel and Fernando Alonso. A real racer with sharp overtaking techniques, Bottas will be hoping his Williams team can produce a consistent car that would see him challenge for more trophies.
4. Felipe Nasr
23 year-old Brazilian driver Nasr is in his first full season in Formula 1 with team Sauber. Having done fairly well winning a couple of titles in the junior categories of racing, Nasr will be hoping to carry over his form and make his name in Formula 1. He has gained 16 points to his name in the 2015 drivers’ championship and will be looking to gain more experience before he proves to be a tough competitor.
5. Max Verstappen
Verstappen does not have a driving licence to drive in his native Belgium, as he is not old enough to take a practical test, but is already racing in Formula 1 at the tender age of 17. The youngest driver on the grid is currently in his first season and has not finished on the podium yet, but some fine performances has seen him earn 26 points for his Toro Rosso team so far. As he grows into the sport and gains more track experience, it will be hard to bet against him finishing with at least 1 world championship before he retires.
The Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix will be taking place from 18th to 20th September 2015 at the Marina Bay Street Circuit.