A year after starting from pole position, Sebastian Vettel is set for a long evening at the Singapore Grand Prix after a suspension issue saw him eliminated from Q1 in last position.
Vettel and Ferrari had hoped to take the fight to Mercedes and Red Bull in qualifying but the German was soon in trouble, with a suspension failure forcing him to three-wheel through Singapore's corners. The German stayed out for another lap in an attempt to set a time good enough to get through to Q2, and thus buy Ferrari time to find a fix, but to no avail.
A clearly frustrated Vettel was left wondering what might have been after the session.
"Initially I thought it was at the front but I think it looked like it was at the rear, it was quite obvious to see going round on three wheels wasn't really working around here," Vettel said. "I don't know yet, I think by now we've probably had a close look but it felt like the front anti-roll bar broke."
While he was still out on track, Vettel complained on the radio that staying out for another lap cost him time -- though he does not think an earlier stoppage would have made much difference.
"There was no time to fix it. I wanted to come in but then we decided to stay out and then we came in because it was just hopeless, we weren't quick enough but there was no time within three or four minutes to fix the problem."
Though he faces starting from the back of the grid at the most physically demanding circuit on the calendar, Vettel says he has to take an optimistic approach.
"We will see tomorrow, it's a long race. We can still fight back with plenty of tyres, so let's see what we can do with strategy. For sure it's not ideal but it is what it is now, we can't change it, I should be in the car, I'm here. It's really annoying and disappointing but we have to go and deal with it and do the best tomorrow."