Lewis Hamilton extended his Formula 1 championship lead to 40 points after taking a dominant victory in Sunday's Singapore Grand Prix, with title rival Sebastian Vettel paying the price for a Ferrari strategy call that left him third at the chequered flag.

After charging to pole position on Saturday at the Marina Bay Street Circuit, it was Hamilton who once again starred under the lights for Mercedes on race day, leading home Red Bull's Max Verstappen after a controlled and composed display.

Singapore #5 Circuit of Champions

Hamilton was able to retain his lead off the line before managing his tyres perfectly, getting to the end of the race on a single pit stop and enjoying an ultimate margin of victory of 8.9 seconds.

As Hamilton easily retained his lead, third-placed Vettel was forced to back out of a possible move around the outside of Verstappen at Turn 1, but managed to grab second place just four corners later after getting a tow on the run to Turn 5. Vettel pulled ahead just before the Safety Car was deployed following a crash for Esteban Ocon, who was bumped into the wall by Force India teammate Sergio Perez at Turn 3, ending the Frenchman’s race in the process.

Hamilton was able to keep Vettel at an arm’s length on the restart after a four-lap Safety Car stint, controlling the field at a slow pace before eventually ramping up his pace by two seconds per lap from Lap 12 onwards, as he looked to create enough of a gap to the lead midfield runners to come out of the pits in clear air.

Trailing Hamilton by two seconds, Vettel dived into the pits at the end of Lap 14 in the hope of getting the undercut and passing his championship rival. Ferrari fitted Vettel with a set of Ultrasoft tyres, only for the German to emerge on-track behind Perez, causing him to lose time.

Hamilton was able to comfortably emerge from the pits one lap later ahead of Vettel, himself going for Soft tyres to take to the end of the race, but Vettel’s main concern was Verstappen. After series of quick times at the end of his stint, Verstappen pitted at the end of Lap 17 for Soft tyres and survived a stall while exiting his box before going side-by-side with Vettel into Turn 3. This time, Verstappen managed to get ahead, squeezing his rival out.

Vettel was left bemused by the pit call, stressing to his Ferrari team that he doubted the Ultrasofts would make it to the end of the race now. He slipped three seconds behind Hamilton and Verstappen, both of whom were looking safe to make it to the end without making a second stop.

Hamilton was able to manage his pace well at the front, keeping the gap to Verstappen at around four seconds, only for lapped cars to begin to play a role in the fight for the lead entering the final third of the race.

Running outside of the points, Williams’ Sergey Sirotkin managed to survive a side-swipe from a frustrated Perez - who received a 10-second time penalty for causing a collision - before going wheel-to-wheel with Romain Grosjean, seemingly oblivious to Hamilton approaching behind, who was forced to slow dramatically.

This allowed Verstappen to close up and get onto the rear wing of the Mercedes in front, only for him to also lose time behind Sirotkin and Grosjean. Both he and Hamilton vented their fury over team radio, with the gap at the front returning to its original three seconds on lap later. The stewards looked dimly on Grosjean’s actions in particular, slapping him with a five-second time penalty.

It proved to be the closest Verstappen would get to Hamilton in the fight for victory. Despite fears of a late-race Safety Car that would have forced Mercedes into a second stop, Hamilton managed to keep the race under control at the front to cross the line and score his seventh win of the season, extending his lead in the drivers’ championship in the process.

Verstappen was left to settle for second place, which marked his best result since his victory in Austria two months ago, while Vettel managed to get to the end of the race on his Ultrasofts without any major issues, crossing the line third. However, the result meant he slipped a further 10 points behind race winner Hamilton at the top of the drivers’ championship, the gap now standing at 40 points with six races remaining.

Valtteri Bottas helped Mercedes extend its constructors’ championship lead as he finished the race in fourth place, fending off a late charge from Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull behind despite struggling with his tyres. Ricciardo had rolled the dice on a long first stint on Hypersofts before taking on Ultrasofts for the second half of the race, but could not pass the Finns ahead, leaving him sixth overall.

Fernando Alonso scored his best result since the end of April as he finished seventh for McLaren, benefitting from his decision to start on Ultrasoft tyres from P11 on the grid. After seeing the Hypersoft midfield drivers pit and emerge in traffic, Alonso was able to do a long first stint and comfortably retain his position, crossing the line P7 with a 20-second gap to Renault’s Carlos Sainz Jr. behind, who also benefitted from the Hypersoft runners’ struggles.

Recently-announced Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc returned to the points after five races away, having also jumped the Ultrasoft starters through the pit cycle to secure ninth place for Sauber. Nico Hulkenberg was the only midfield driver who started inside the top 10 to score points, crossing the line P10.

Marcus Ericsson finished 11th for Sauber ahead of Stoffel Vandoorne, both drivers having rolled the dice on long first stints. Haas’ Grosjean finished 13th on track, but dropped to 15th after his time penalty was applied, allowing Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly and Lance Stroll to both gain a position.

Brendon Hartley finished one lap down in 16th after an early stop from Hypersofts left him in traffic and forced him into a second stop. Hartley was almost pushed into the wall by Sirotkin, who aggressively defended his position by squeezing the Toro Rosso driver out, only to receive a five-second time penalty for the move.

Perez’s turbulent race ended with him finishing 17th ahead of Kevin Magnussen, who pitted three times for Haas and ran off the pace throughout before posting the fastest lap of the race in the closing stages. Sirotkin ended the race two laps down in 19th for Williams.