Following a close battle in qualifying under the lights around the Marina Bay, Brendon narrowly missed out on making Q2 and was set to make his Singapore Grand Prix debut from P17.
Opting to roll the dice and make some brave strategy calls during the race to aid his charge up the order, Hartley started the race on Pirelli’s Hypersoft tyre and hoped to charge past those around him. Pitting early on to move over to the Ultrasoft tyre, Brendon’s clever call was covered off by those around him, so any benefit from the early stop was hindered and saw him remain just outside the mid-field battle.
Knowing that their pace was strong on the Hypersoft tyre, the team opted for one more roll of the dice to pit again and revert back to the Hypersoft tyre, hoping this would see them making a final charge over the closing laps. In another bitter turn of luck, Hartley found himself stuck behind the Williams and in turn lost a place to Kevin Magnussen to complete the Singapore Grand Prix in P17.
Brendon Hartley – #28 Scuderia Toro Rosso:
“We rolled the dice today and decided to pit early, I was quicker than the guys in front being on the Hypersoft. We changed to the Ultrasoft and a lot of people covered us which put us back in traffic, so it didn’t really work out. We decided to do another pit stop and I got stuck behind the Williams and lost a place to Magnussen, there was a couple of good scraps out there but we didn’t have the pace for points today. It’s disappointing as we had high hopes for Singapore. It was a tough race, we got to the end but there’s no celebrations today. We chose to start on the Hypersoft because we knew we potentially had better tyre life than others around us, and we hoped we could make ground on the first lap. It was a bit tricky because Ocon went into the wall, but we were very competitive in the first stint on the Hypersoft. We tried to do something different to move up the field, but it didn’t work out.”
Round 16 – Russian Grand Prix, Sunday 30th September 2018.