In Singapore this Sunday, Max Verstappen has the opportunity to become the first driver since Michael Schumacher to be crowned world champion five Grand Prix from the end of the season. At present, this is not the most likely hypothesis since the Dutchman will only start in 8th position on the Marina Bay circuit. During qualifying this Saturday, he thought he was going to achieve another big performance before being called back to the pits by his team because there was not enough petrol left in his single-seater. It is therefore Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) who inherits pole position. Important data on an urban circuit which does not encourage overtaking.
Nevertheless, the Red Bull driver is 116 points ahead of the Monegasque and seems to be heading ineluctably towards a second consecutive title. Especially since Verstappen is used to crazy lifts. In Hungary, he managed to win despite a 10th place on the starting grid. To climb to the roof of the world in the heat of Singapore, he will again have to achieve a feat and climb to the top step of the podium.
The results of Leclerc and Perez, decisive
If he wins, as a bonus, the point for the best lap in the race, the Batavian would pocket 26 units and would force Charles Leclerc to do better than 8th. His teammate Sergio Perez will have to arrive in the first four to delay his coronation.
In the event of Verstappen’s victory without the fastest lap point, three conditions will have to be met to ensure him the trophy. Charles Leclerc will not have to do better than 9th and Sergio Perez will have to finish 4th at best without picking up this famous bonus point. If the Mexican gets it then he will have to finish 5th or further.
Any other scenario would postpone a possible, but probable, Max Verstappen title by at least a week. Last season, the Dutchman waited until the last lap of the final race to win his first title. This season, the suspense should not drag on.