Lewis Hamilton admitted he was thrilled to bounce back from his retirement in Italy with victory in the Singapore Grand Prix – F1's second race under lights.
Hamilton, who crashed out of a podium position on the final lap at Monza, started the Singapore race from pole position and was in dominant form as he led the race from start-to-finish – aside from a few laps during the second round of stops - despite pressure from both Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel before both were given drive through penalties.
Victory for Hamilton for the second time this season came after McLaren worked hard to rectify a problem with his car on Friday, and the Briton admitted it had been a fantastic weekend for the team.
“This is the perfect end to a fantastic weekend,” he said. “The race was physically very tough for all the drivers, but it was actually quite straightforward for me. I made a good start and I knew I was running longer than the guys behind me, so I was able to bridge the gap back to them. It was a very nicely controlled race in that way.
“The team did radio me about a small problem with KERS – but I didn't have a problem in the cockpit and was able to just disable it and then re-engage it. It worked fine after that. We came here hoping for a good result – and I wanted to redeem myself after the last lap in Monza – and we got it!”
Team principal Martin Whitmarsh also took time to praise the Woking-based outfit for the result, which came after a series of new upgrades were introduced to the car for the weekend.
“You won't be surprised to hear me describe what Lewis did this weekend as 'a fantastic job',” he said. “After a slightly troubled Friday, the team worked tremendously hard throughout Friday night and Saturday morning to rebuild Lewis's car completely – and the result, combined with a brilliant pole lap from the man himself, was that we were able to approach today with a win firmly in our sights. As such, it was a perfectly paced weekend – and Lewis delivered magnificently today.
“Working together with the team, he was able to control the race from the front – and, although at one point both Nico and Sebastian were piling the pressure on, we were always confident. In short, I'd describe it as a great victory – not only for Lewis, but also for the team. To design and manufacture the new parts required for our latest upgrades, against time pressure, and yet to do it accurately and reliably, is a truly superb achievement.
“In fact, I'm every bit as proud of the team as I am of Lewis himself.”