On Friday in Singapore, during the second free practice session, it was Carlos Sainz’s time to dominate after Lewis Hamilton’s (Mercedes) performance in the first session. The Spaniard is currently in the first place, one position ahead of his colleague Charles Leclerc at Ferrari.
On Friday, after the second day of free practice at the Singapore Grand Prix, Formula One drivers Carlos Sainz of Spain and Charles Leclerc of Monaco both drove their Ferraris to the top of the timesheets. This is the first race in Singapore in the past two years, so Formula 1 is making its return there. Sainz won the race against Leclerc by 208/1000th of a second at the Marina Bay circuit, which was set against the backdrop of the tropical night in Singapore. George Russell, driving for Mercedes, and Max Verstappen, driving for Red Bull, the comfortable leads of the championship, were no match for the two Ferraris.
This coming weekend is the first time that the Dutchman, who will turn 25 years old on Friday, will have a shot at winning the championship. If he were to win the race at Marina Bay, while at the same time Leclerc finished ninth at best and Sergio Pérez (Red Bull) finished fourth (without gaining the point for the fastest lap), then he would win the championship for the second time in a row.
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Earlier, Lewis Hamilton was the one who controlled the first session of the race. The seven-time world champion came in first place in a test session for the very first time this season. The 37-year-old Briton, who is currently ranked just sixth in the world, has not yet achieved his first triumph in the year 2022. He still needs to win six more races to complete the task. During this first session, Verstappen had achieved a time that was the second quickest overall. In the second, on the other hand, he was only able to finish eight laps, which limited the amount of practice he could get. Concerning the single-seater vehicle in question, the owner made several adjustments, wasting some time. Without this posing a threat to the driver who has won eleven of the season’s sixteen Grands Prix races already this year.
Verstappen has not yet won a race in Singapore, which is considered by the drivers to be the most difficult race of the year. This is not only because of the hot and humid conditions but also because of the pace that is imposed by the circuit, which is clocked in by 23 corners and whose short lines and straight lines offer little respite. All of it is encircled by walls that do not permit any space for error.
Red Bull asked about the budget cap
Even if it is hot in Singapore, the return of Formula One to Asian soil after two years of absence owing to a pandemic is another matter which could plunge the paddock into upheaval in the coming days. The absence of Formula One in Asia was caused by the virus. According to several different media outlets, teams broke the budget cap that was placed on Formula One for the first time in 2021 and was set at 145 million dollars last year (then around 142 million euros).
According to the Italian publication Gazzetta Dello Sport, there will be a total of three teams competing, but the German publication Auto motor und sport reports that just two teams will be competing. Both of these sources are quoting Red Bull, who currently holds the title of driver champion owing to Verstappen. “Our declaration was definitely below the ceiling,” said Christian Horner, the boss of Red Bull, while speaking into the microphone of Sky Sports F1. “definitely unaware of any offense,” he added. The FIA is in the process of finalizing the evaluation of the 2021 financial data provided by all Formula 1 teams. According to what the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FIA) had to say about the matter, “Any alleged violations of the financial regulations would be dealt with according to the official method provided for in the regulations.”
The FIA certificates that verify the teams’ financial statements for the year 2021 are anticipated to arrive the following week. The consequences that are allowed can vary from a simple reprimand up to expulsion from the championship, including the withholding of points from the drivers’ and/or constructors’ championship. This is contingent on the severity of the offense that was committed. According to Auto auto und sport, one of the teams would have broken through the ceiling in a “significant” fashion, which would have caused an “earthquake” if Red Bull was the offending party.
In 2021, Max Verstappen defeated Lewis Hamilton to win the Formula One World Championship at the final race of the season, which took place in Abu Dhabi. The event’s conclusion was marred by controversy due to an illegal safety car technique that changed the race’s course maps.