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2023 Singapore Grand Prix Takeaways

By Jeff Stinger

There’s no question that the 2023 Singapore Grand Prix will be remembered for its thrilling finish and the day when Red Bull’s winning streak finally drew to a close. It was a night that produced memorable narratives, winners, and losers. Let’s get on with the top 2023 Singapore Grand Prix storylines, courtesy of team Nitrobetting.

Key Takeaways from the 2023 Singapore Grand Prix

CarLando Tops the Singapore Grand Prix

Carlos Sainz dominated the entire weekend and fully deserved his second Grand Prix victory. He was flawless throughout the three practice sessions and bagged P1 in qualifying. But, what made him stand out even more was his late-race tactics that allowed him to protect his lead from the pair of Mercedes in his side mirrors.

Sainz decided to keep the gap between him and Lando Norris close enough so McLaren could deploy its aero during the DRS zones. The Tifosi roared as Sainz ensured Norris kept the chasing cars behind them in the last few laps of the race. More than that, Norris would have lost his place if it weren’t for Carlos’ tactics. So, purposely dropping back to give Norris a slight advantage was one for the books.

The 29-year-old overflowed with confidence as soon as the lights were out. He led every lap in Singapore and was only denied full points by Lewis Hamilton, who scored the fastest lap.

Meanwhile, former teammate Lando Norris in the McLaren enjoyed great pace following nine different upgrades on the MCL60. He made the most of the changes as the updated hardware gave him a significant advantage over his competitors.

He would have lost a place or two, but his assured drive against Hamilton and Russell kept him within reach of an eighth podium finish. Moreover, the upgrades resolved the slow-speed weaknesses McLaren dreaded for a few years. It’s only a matter of time before he gets his first career Grand Prix victory.

New Faces in the Top 10

Gasly struggled to keep up with Alpine teammate Esteban Ocon this weekend, but that was easily written off after scoring a P6 finish behind this weekend’s strongest cars and the unsettled machine of defending world champion Max Verstappen.

He worked his way to a points finish from P12. Ocon’s retirement also benefited the former AlphaTauri wheelman. While it would’ve meant that both A523s finished in the points, Ocon faced mechanical issues that ended his race early. It was a frustrating night for the birthday boy as it meant he picked up his fifth DNF this season.

It was hardly a flashy drive by the 27-year-old, but a fundamental drive nevertheless. His solid result made up for the non-finish on the other side of the Alpine garage and put behind an upsetting weekend at Monza.

The other star of the night was AlphaTauri’s reserve driver Liam Lawson scoring points in his third Grand Prix appearance. Like Gasly, Lawson didn’t have to do anything extravagant over the weekend. His Q3 showing stimulated everyone as he delivered the exact duties his role entailed.

Lawson picked up valuable experience across three Grand Prix, all featuring vastly different conditions. He failed to score points in Zandvoort and Monza and scored the best result of any AlphaTauri driver in the 2023 season. Ultimately, he did what any reserve driver should and seized the opportunity to turn heads around the paddock.

A Night to Forget for George Russell

This was a painful night for Russell who raced his way up to P3 following a risky late double stack by Mercedes during a virtual safety car window. Overshooting the Turn 10 entry wall on the final lap was a move that lost him a podium finish. He will learn from the error, but the important part is he can use this as fuel to bounce back in the next race. Hamilton made crucial errors in the past, Verstappen has, and some of the greatest drivers in the world.

What’s important is for the Brit to carry the momentum he built over the weekend into the remainder of the calendar. He had more pace and his move for third on Leclerc was perfectly carried out. This will sting for a bit, in what some consider a poor season for the former Williams driver, but it’s moments like this that make them stronger.

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