Lewis Hamilton was fastest in the second practice ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix going a tenth faster than the Red Bull of Max Verstappen. The Mercedes driver set the pace early on using the medium tyres while the Dutchman was on the hard.
Hamilton took the lead towards the end of the qualifying simulation to move ahead of Verstappen, who made it clear over the radio that he felt he could do better as his best lap was “compromised” in the final sector. But split the Mercedes, before Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel went quicker.
Verstappen then went faster, which put him into second leaving Vettel eight tenths behind. But was unable to push the Mercedes out of the top spot, while Valtteri Bottas recovered from a crash in the first session to go fourth.
On race pace, the battle between Hamilton and Verstappen looked far less close, the Mercedes was nearly a second a lap quicker on average over the race-simulation runs on the soft tyre later in the session.
The Finn was half a second faster than the Red Bull of Alex Albon following his difficult session. Bottas went straight on at Memorial Corner before later in the lap breaking his front wing in contact with Albon. Both drivers were a second off their respective teammates.
Charles Leclerc had a frustrating evening, like his teammate he had been caught in traffic and that stopped him completing his first run. But the Monacan got a lap in to go a tenth faster than Vettel, following sitting out most of the afternoon session with a gearbox failure.
McLaren showed some pace, Carlos Sainz was one hundredth slower than Vettel, and ahead of Nico Hulkenberg by two tenths. His teammate Lando Norris was ninth, two tenths off the pace. Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly was tenth eight tenths ahead of teammate Daniil Kvyat.
The Russian survived an early brush with the wall to take eleventh and was within a tenth of Gasly. Kvyat’s former teammate Daniel Ricciardo was almost a tenth behind in the Toro Rosso.
Sergio Perez was thirteenth, however, the Racing Point driver was angry after the Haas of Kevin Magnussen drifted to his right while the Haas driver was attempting to pass him on that side. The stewards will investigate the incident after the session.
Antonio Giovinazzi and Racing Point’s Lance Stroll set the same time, but the Italian set his time first and stays ahead. Giovinazzi’s teammate Kimi Raikkonen lost out in both the first and third sector, and was a further hundredth behind.
Haas appeared to struggle for pace, the team were running at the back and were spilt by the Williams of George Russell. Romain Grosjean five-hundredths ahead of the Englishman, who had been as high as sixth thanks to being the first driver to complete a qualifying simulation lap, with Kubica last after lapping 0.732s off his teammate.