A batch of Ferrari upgrades for the Singapore Grand Prix backfired so badly that Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen are now half a second per lap slower than their rivals at Mercedes, it has been reported by Auto Motor und Sport.
According to AMuS, the Scuderia were two tenths per lap quicker before visiting Marina Bay, meaning the new package has ultimately cost them 0.7 seconds.
In the meantime, Mercedes have added aerodynamic upgrades to their car to hammer home the advantage, with Lewis Hamilton surging towards a fifth world title on the back of four consecutive victories.
It compounds the misery of Ferrari failing to properly take advantage of having the fastest car on the grid – errors on the track and pit wall costing them in Germany, Hungary and Italy as Hamilton took victories in all to keep Vettel at arm’s length in the title race.
Now, Hamilton needs just outscore Vettel by eight points across the final four races of 2018, starting at next weekend’s United States Grand Prix, where the Mercedes man has won each year of the V6 Hybrid era.
Victory at the Circuit of the Americas will do the job for Hamilton, provided Vettel does not follow him home in second.
Hamilton could very well wrap things up in Austin, courtesy his track record there. Also, Ferrari had been floundering a lot in the past few races. Aside from Vettel’s mistakes, the strategies cooked up by the team, have been falling flat.
This is Vettel’s final chance to mount a serious challenge to Lewis Hamilton’s championship. So, the big question on everyone’s minds are, who will triumph in the Lone Star state? This championship is solely between Ferrari and Mercedes, Red Bull had dropped out of the running, a while ago. But, they can still challenge for the win at the Circuit of the Americas.