Don’t write Vettel off just yet…

Date published: September 20 2017

Three races ago he was leading the championship; now he trails Lewis Hamilton by 28 points – but don’t write off Sebastian Vettel just yet.

Having lost the lead in the standings to Hamilton at Monza, Vettel headed to Singapore with many predicting that it would be the race where he retook P1.

That didn’t happen.

Although he started from pole position, Vettel was involved – some would say instigated – an opening lap collision that took out Max Verstappen, Kimi Raikkonen and, most importantly, himself.

It also handed Hamilton an unchallenged run to the chequered flag – and maximum points.

The Mercedes driver now leads the standings by 28 points over Vettel, however, there is still time for the German to fight back. He’s done it before, he can do it again.

In 2010 he trailed Hamilton by 31 points with six races remaining, a bigger deficit than he has this season, and he won the Drivers’ title by four points.

Two years later, with nine races still to run, he was 41 points behind Fernando Alonso. Vettel went on to win by three points.

Hamilton has already acknowledged that the battle is by no means over, as has 1997 World Champion Jacques Villeneuve.

“This was a circuit where Ferrari should have won a lot of points so it’s a tough setback, but there are still six races to go,” Vileneuve said.

“Lewis will also lose points so stay relaxed.”

Meanwhile, former driver Jarno Trulli reckons the championship is “extremely well-balanced” with only 28 points the difference.

“A wrong step from Mercedes, and Vettel is back,” he added to Gazzetta dello Sport.