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Ferrari Images: Pointless In Singapore

Pointless In Singapore


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Pointless In Singapore

For the first time this season, Scuderia Ferrari failed to score a single point in a Grand Prix. A Safety Car period early on did nothing to help the situation and a mistake at Felipe Massa's pit stop effectively ended any chance he had of a good result having started from pole position. His result was further compromised by a drive through penalty and then a puncture.

“It's hard to deal with losing in this fashion a race that was within our grasp, with a car that was just the way I wanted it,” explained Massa after the race. “We had a good strategy and all the signs were there that we could get a one-two finish. But things can change in a moment and that's what happened today. At the pit stop, one of the guys made a mistake. But we are only human. Each one of us always tries to do our best and these things can happen. With the Safety Car still on track, I didn't lose a lap, but then I got a drive-through and later I also picked up a puncture in the left rear. On this track it is almost impossible to overtake and ending up at the back meant I had no chance of getting into the points. Seven points to make up in three races? That can be a lot or it can be a little. We have the potential to do well, as we saw today and we will give it our best shot. We mustn't give up and I'm sure we won't.”

At least Massa completed the race, unlike his team mate.

"I was trying to attack Glock in case he might make a mistake, but I went slightly wide at the chicane, jumping over the kerb and when the car landed, I lost control and ended up in the barriers,” said Raikkonen. My situation in the championship was already rather compromised, so this doesn't really make that much difference but I am unhappy because the team has lost precious points in the Constructors' classification. In the opening laps, the car was a bit difficult but then it improved a lot, to such an extent that I was able to close right up to Hamilton. When the Safety Car came out, I know my race was compromised given that I had to pit behind Felipe. I was able to get back up to fifth but then the incident I described earlier happened. Clearly, morale is not high today. But I am not used to giving up and will do my very best to try and help the team reach its targets."

The surprise winner was Fernando Alonso in the Renault, with Nico Rosberg taking a second place for Williams and Lewis Hamilton third for McLaren-Mercedes. This results makes the championship situation much tougher with just three races remaining as McLaren-Mercedes moves ahead of the Scuderia to lead the Constructors' by a single point, while Hamilton's lead over Felipe in the Drivers' classification goes from one point to seven.

When the lights went out the front of the grid maintained position, with Felipe leading Hamilton and Kimi, followed by Kubica, Vettel and Glock these last two moving up a place at the expense of Kovalainen who had banged wheels with Kubica. Felipe and Hamilton were separated by just over a second, while Kimi was trailing by a further 4.4 on lap 3. In the early stages the best battle was for ninth place as Rosberg was desperately trying to pass Trulli, the Finn finally getting the Italian on lap 6. On lap 7 the cameras showed Felipe running over a piece of debris but it did not seem to have any effect.

On lap 10 of 61, the order was Massa, Hamilton, Raikkonen, now upping his pace and closing on second place, Kubica, Vettel, Glock, Kovalainen, Heidfeld, Rosberg, Nakajima completing the top ten, followed by Alonso, up from fifteenth, Trulli, Webber, Button, Coulthard, Bourdais, Barrichello, Piquet, Sutil and Fisichella last. Kimi had picked up the pace and was now 3.2 behind Hamilton, while Felipe's lead over the McLaren man was 3.4 seconds.

Lap 12 saw Alonso the first man to pit, which would be a key to the final outcome and then on lap 15, Piquet crashed his Renault heavily into the wall bringing out the Safety Car. Barrichello had pitted along with Rosberg at this time but the Honda driver then stopped for no apparent reason out on track. Kubica, Webber and Coulthard also stopped, all before the pit lane was officially open. When the pit lane opened Massa and Raikkonen came in together for a double stop, but it went wrong as the Brazilian was released by the team while the fuel line was still attached to his car and he had to stop at the end of pit lane. Raikkonen came in right behind him and had a normal stop, but obviously lost time having to wait his turn. After what seemed like an eternity, the mechanics finally managed to remove the fuel line from Felipe's car and he continued out on track, not losing a lap but running at the back.

The order on lap 18, still behind the SC was now Rosberg, Trulli, Fisichella, Kubica, Alonso, Webber, Bourdais, Coulthard, Hamilton and Vettel completing the top ten. Kimi and Felipe were 17th and 18th. On lap 19, the SC came in and the race was on again. However, there was much confusion as Race Control was expected to impose penalties on those drivers who stopped before the pit lane had been officially opened. Massa would also be penalised with a drive-through for "dangerous release from pit lane."

On lap 27, Kubica came in for a 10 second stop go penalty. One lap later it was Rosberg's turn to do the same thing, dropping him from the lead to fourth, promoting Trulli to leader ahead of Fisichella, followed by Alonso, Coulthard and Hamilton. Fisichella finally refuelled on lap 29. Mark Webber retired in the garage on this lap. Kimi and Felipe were twelfth and fifteenth at this point.

So at the halfway point in this extraordinary race, the order was Trulli, Alonso, Rosberg, Coulthard, Hamilton, Glock, Vettel, Heidfeld, Nakajima, Button, Kovalainen, Raikkonen, Sutil, Bourdais, Kubica, Fisichella and Massa seventeenth and last. Alonso then moved into the lead as Trulli pitted and Kimi was up to tenth. An exciting battle was brewing in the fight for third place, as Coulthard was being closed down by Hamilton.

Rosberg came in from second for his final stop on lap 40, dropping to seventh, and one lap later, race leader Alonso made his final refuelling, coming out just ahead of the battle between Coulthard and Hamilton. The slight loss of momentum allowed the McLaren driver to get ahead of the Red Bull. These two men then came down pit lane together on lap 42, with the McLaren staying out ahead, as the Scotsman tried to leave his pit before the refuelling line had been removed. Kimi was now up to eighth and fourth a lap later, but the Finn had yet to make a final pit stop.

A second safety car period was prompted by Sutil hitting the wall and when it was over, for the final sprint to the flag, Kimi had got himself up to fifth place, while out in front, Alonso had a healthy lead over Rosberg who was being chased down by third placed Hamilton. Felipe was fourteenth. Then with just three laps remaining, further bad news as Kimi clipped the wall, damaging the right front corner of the car to retire.

"A black day, there's little else to say,” said Stefano Domenicali. We had the potential to finish first and second but we didn't even pick up a point. We are very disappointed but that doesn't mean we are downtrodden. We have always shown our ability to react, especially at the most difficult times and we will do it again this time. The situation in the two championships has become more complicated but there are still three races to go and a lot of points up for grabs. We know what we have to do to reach our objectives. The first part of the race showed that today our car was the quickest on track. The Safety Car came out at the worst possible moment, but we are not looking for excuses because this uncertain factor must always be taken into account. Then the team made a mistake at the pit stop during the Safety Car period, which cost Massa the race. I am very sorry for Felipe because he was driving a very strong race following on from a great pole yesterday. I want to point out that it was Felipe himself who went to console the mechanic who made the mistake, which shows the team spirit that we have between us: we win together and we lose together. Kimi managed to get into the points but then he ended up in the barriers at one of the many tricky points around this track. A shame, as it would have meant precious points for the Constructors' classification. We must look ahead and prepare ourselves as well as possible for the remaining three races."

ENDS

Singapore GP - Race

Singapore, 28 settembre 2008

F. Massa: 13th 1:57.51.474 + 36.170 61 laps chassis 269
K. Raikkonen: 15th 1:50.11.975 DNF 57 laps chassis 271
Weather: air temperature 29/32 °C, track temperature 29/31° C, overcast.

1. Fernando Alonso Spain Renault-Renault 61 01:57:16.304
2. Nico Rosberg Germany Williams-Toyota +2.9
3. Lewis Hamilton Britain McLaren-Mercedes +5.9
4. Timo Glock Germany Toyota-Toyota +8.1
5. Sebastian Vettel Germany Toro Rosso-Ferrari +10.2
6. Nick Heidfeld Germany BMW Sauber +11.1
7. David Coulthard Britain Red Bull-Renault +16.3
8. Kazuki Nakajima Japan Williams-Toyota +18.4
9. Jenson Button Britain Honda-Honda +19.8
10. Heikki Kovalainen Finland McLaren-Mercedes +26.9
11. Robert Kubica Poland BMW Sauber +27.9
12. Sebastien Bourdais France Toro Rosso-Ferrari +29.4
13. Felipe Massa Brazil Ferrari-Ferrari +35.1
14. Giancarlo Fisichella Italy Force India-Ferrari +43.5
15. Kimi Raikkonen Finland Ferrari-Ferrari +4 laps (DNF)

Rtd Jarno Trulli Italy Toyota-Toyota 50 laps completed
Rtd Adrian Sutil Germany Force India-Ferrari 49 laps completed
Rtd Mark Webber Australia Red Bull-Renault 29 laps completed
Rtd Rubens Barrichello Brazil Honda-Honda 14 laps completed
Rtd Nelson Piquet Jr Brazil Renault-Renault 13 laps completed

F1 DRIVERS' CHAMPIONSHIP (AFTER ROUND 15 OF 18)
POSITION DRIVER TEAM POINTS
1. LEWIS HAMILTON VODAFONE MCLAREN MERCEDES 84
2. FELIPE MASSA SCUDERIA FERRARI MARLBORO 77
3. ROBERT KUBICA BMW SAUBER F1 TEAM 64
4. KIMI RAIKKONEN SCUDERIA FERRARI MARLBORO 57
5. NICK HEIDFELD BMW SAUBER F1 TEAM 56
6. HEIKKI KOVALAINEN VODAFONE MCLAREN MERCEDES 51
7. FERNANDO ALONSO ING RENAULT F1 TEAM 38
8. SEBASTIAN VETTEL SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO-FERRARI 27
9. JARNO TRULLI PANASONIC TOYOTA RACING 26
10. MARK WEBBER RED BULL RACING-RENAULT 20
= TIMO GLOCK PANASONIC TOYOTA RACING 20
12. NICO ROSBERG AT&T WILLIAMS-TOYOTA 17
13. NELSON PIQUET JR ING RENAULT F1 TEAM 13
14. RUBENS BARRICHELLO HONDA F1 RACING 11
15. KAZUKI NAKAJIMA AT&T WILLIAMS-TOYOTA 9
16. DAVID COULTHARD RED BULL RACING-RENAULT 8
17. SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO-FERRARI 4
18. JENSON BUTTON HONDA F1 RACING 3


F1 CONSTRUCTORS' CHAMPIONSHIP (AFTER ROUND 15 OF 18)
POSITION TEAM POINTS
1. VODAFONE MCLAREN MERCEDES 135
2. SCUDERIA FERRARI MARLBORO 134
3. BMW SAUBER F1 TEAM 120
4. ING RENAULT F1 TEAM 51
5. PANASONIC TOYOTA RACING 46
6. SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO-FERRARI 31
7. RED BULL RACING-RENAULT 28
8. AT&T WILLIAMS-TOYOTA 26
9. HONDA RACING F1 TEAM 14
10. FORCE INDIA F1 TEAM-FERRARI 0

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