Jean-Eric Vergne secured the best result of the season for his Scuderia Toro Rosso team with a fighting sixth at the Singapore Grand Prix, but team-mate Daniil Kvyat struggled for pace and could only finish fourteenth.
Vergne had one of his strongest races of the season as he fights for his Formula 1 future, and fought through to finish sixth despite suffering two 5-second penalties for gaining an advantage while exceeding track limits. In the final few laps he passed Sergio Perez, Nico Hulkenberg, Kimi Raikkonen and Valtteri Bottas, and pulled the gap out that he needed to accommodate his five second penalty.
“It feels great,” insisted Vergne about his result at Marina Bay. “It was a fantastic race and I’m extremely happy, especially considering the two 5 second penalties. I had to push as much as possible in the last laps and pull away and this is what I’ve done. I had a lot of fun overtaking the ones in front of me, an incredible race.
“I did a mistake yesterday in Qualifying and I said to the team that I would have done everything for them to forgive me today and I think I could manage it in the end. So I’m really happy also for the guys, they gave me a good car and the 6th place repays their big effort, we deserved it.
“I’m really confident we can have a good end of the season together and I’m looking forward to Japan, where we also have some updates. Hopefully we can improve even further.”
Team-mate Kvyat had a unhappy day in Singapore, finishing down in fourteenth behind the two Lotus drivers of Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean, but believed he could have finished in the points like his team-mate with a car that handled better.
“It was a very tough race today in which I had to fight more with myself than with the cars around me,” said Kvyat. “The car was quite difficult to drive and it was sliding a lot. It was also hard work to take care of the tyres.
“Unfortunately I also had a problem with my drink system, so I was without water for the whole race, which definitely made it a much tougher race. I think points could have been possible, so well done to JEV, who did a great job today!”