Lewis Hamilton insists Red Bull Racing are not out of reach despite finishing behind both in both free practice sessions around the Marina Bay Street Circuit on Friday, and he feels in with a chance of a strong result.
The Briton came into the weekend not expecting his Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team to be as dominant in Singapore as they were two weeks ago around the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, and so it transpired on Friday, with Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull leading both sessions.
Hamilton ended up fourth fastest in the first session behind Ricciardo, championship rival Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen, but despite ending up third fastest in the evening session under the floodlights, he was more than seven-tenths of a second off Ricciardo, with Verstappen again between them.
“We had a clean day and got through our sessions without problems,” said Hamilton. “It was pretty hot out there, the conditions are pretty awesome to cope with, but the grip on the track is fairly good.
“We were obviously close with the field today and we have still got some improvements to make with the car. Red Bull seem like they’re very strong and they’re thereabouts with Ferrari, so we’ve got some work to do. But nothing is out of reach.”