© Getty Images

Vettel to start last in Singapore after car failure in qualifying

Leave a comment

Sebastian Vettel is poised to start Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix from last position on the grid after a rear anti-roll bar failure on his Ferrari car left him off the pace during qualifying at Marina Bay.

Vettel took pole in Singapore last year before going on to win the race, and hoped to be in the mix at the front of the field with the Mercedes and Red Bull drivers once again this weekend.

After struggling with his setup throughout practice, Vettel’s weekend went from bad to worse in qualifying when he began to lap slowly.

Footage of Vettel out on-track showed the rear of his car behaving in a strange fashion, the German’s live lap delta reading below the required time to get through to Q2.

Vettel opted to pit instead of completing another lap, telling Ferrari it was “stupid” before jumping out of his car. Ultimately, his best lap was over 2.5 seconds shy of a Q2 berth, leaving him 22nd on the grid.

When told by NBCSN that it was not what he expected in qualifying, Vettel replied: “No, definitely not!

“Nevertheless I think we’ll have a good race. We now have to ensure the second car [teammate Kimi Raikkonen] survives. Shame as we could have been high up with both. But we have fresh tires!

“I think it was the rear [anti-roll bar],” Vettel added. “That’s the feeling usually when you go around on three wheels.”

The result marks Vettel’s first Q1 exit since the 2015 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

The Singapore Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app from 7am ET on Sunday.

Report: Spencer Pigot out at Ed Carpenter Racing

Joe Skibinski / IndyCar
1 Comment

Spencer Pigot will not return to Ed Carpenter Racing in 2020, according to a story Thursday by RACER.com.

The 26-year-old Floridian, who won the 2015 Indy Lights championship, is expected to be replaced in the No. 21 Chevrolet by 2019 Indy Lights runner-up Rinus VeeKay.

“I’m appreciative of the opportunity ECR gave me,” Pigot told RACER.com. “I understand the reasons they had to go in a different direction, and wish them all the best.”

In 56 NTT IndyCar Series starts, Pigot has 15 top 10 finishes, with a best finish of second at Iowa in 2018. He finished 14th in the 2019 point standings.

VeeKay, who tested in an Indy car twice for ECR in 2019, has six wins in 18 Indy Lights starts, including a weekend sweep of the final two rounds of the season at Laguna Seca in September.

A representative from ECR told NBC Sports Thursday that the team currently could not comment on any driver rumors as the team currently does not have any drivers under contract for the 2020 season, although it is presumed that owner/driver Carpenter will return to the No. 20 entry for the oval rounds.

NBC Sports will provide updates on the story once more information becomes available.