Alonso holds off Vettel for win
30th Nov 1999 8:00 am
Ferraris Fernando Alonso scored a crucial victory at the Singapore Grand Prix after holding off a full-race charge from Red Bull rival Sebastian Vettel. Mark Webber finished in third position.
Fernando Alonso has continued Ferrari's late charge for the 2010 world championship with a lights-to-flag victory in the Singapore GP. The Spaniard saw off a late challenge from Sebastian Vettel to take the win, with Mark Webber completing the podium in the other Red Bull.
As well as keeping Alonso squarely in the title hunt, the race dealt another blow to the hopes of Lewis Hamilton, who failed to finish for the second race in a row. Team-mate Jenson Button salvaged something for McLaren by finishing fourth.
Alonso's win proved to the relatively straightforward, as although Vettel was never far behind him, nor was he ever really close enough to mount a serious challenge. The pair held their positions after pitting on the same lap, and it was only on the final lap that Vettel managed to get close enough to think about having a look. But Alonso managed to keep him at bay.
Webber's third place owed much to a tyre gamble when the safety car came out on lap three to remove Tonio Liuzzi's stricken Force India from the circuit. The Red Bull pitwall decided to roll the dice and bring Webber in from fifth to change to the harder tyre - the Australian being the only one of the frontrunners to do so.
He returned to the track in 11th and over the laps that followed regained enough ground that he was able to leapfrog the two McLarens in the pits. Hamilton later had a chance to get the place back on a restart when Webber became bogged down behind a lapped Virgin, but the pair made contact that resulted in the Briton's car being sufficiently damaged to put him out of the race. Webber, miraculously, was able to continue unharmed.
Despite being urged to push in the closing laps, Button was unable to get within range of Webber and settled for fourth ahead of Mercedes' Nico Rosberg,
Williams got both of its cars into the points with Rubens Barrichello sixth and Nico Hulkenberg ninth, the pair being split by Renault's Robert Kubica (who spent the final laps making an entertaining recovery from a puncture) and Force India's Adrian Sutil.
Felipe Massa claimed the final point for Ferrari in tenth, the Brazilian having pitted on lap two after starting from the rear of the grid following his problems in qualifying.