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Formula One's Sebastian Vettel rolls into Singapore night race

September 20, 2013|By Jim Peltz
  • Sebastian Vettel prepares to drive out of his team garage during Friday's practice session for the Singapore Grand Prix on the Marina Bay City Circuit.
Sebastian Vettel prepares to drive out of his team garage during Friday's… (Wong Maye-E / Associated…)

Formula One changes things up a bit this weekend with a night race in Singapore, but that's unlikely to alter Sebastian Vettel's title march.

The 26-year-old Red Bull driver, in seeking his fourth consecutive Formula One championship, also is looking to capture his third consecutive Singapore Grand Prix.

The German driver holds a 53-point lead over Ferrari's Fernando Alonso heading into Sunday's race. And to no one's surprise, Vettel posted the fastest lap in Friday's two practice sessions on the 3.15-mile Marina Bay Street Circuit, followed by his Red Bull teammate Mark Webber.

"We seem to be quick, but I think Mercedes will be very strong in qualifying tomorrow," Vettel said, referring to Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

There are seven races left in the Formula One season, with Singapore the first stop on an Asian stretch that includes South Korea and Japan.

Then it's on to India, Abu Dhabi and the United States -- at the Circuit of the Americas track in Austin, Texas -- before the finale in Brazil on Nov. 24.

The current Singapore race was added to Formula One's schedule in 2008, and Alonso won the event in two of the first three years. But Vettel won the race in 2011 and 2012.

Because it's a night race, "it takes some laps for your eyes to feel comfortable, and it is more the shadows that require extra concentration," Vettel told Formula One's website.

"That makes the race so demanding, and afterwards you're a bit more exhausted than usual," he said.


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