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How Red Bull’s Max Verstappen can clinch his second consecutive F1 world title in Singapore

With the Formula 1 circuit returning to Singapore for the first time in two years for the Singapore Grand Prix, Red Bull’s Max Verstappen is poised to claim his second consecutive world title.

This is how he can take the championship under the lights of Singapore.

Verstappen enters the Singapore Grand Prix on 335 points on the season, giving him a commanding 116-point lead in qualifying over Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, who enters this weekend on 219 points on the campaign. Verstappen’s Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez is third with 210 points this season.

For Verstappen to clinch the title in Singapore, he will need a top spot and a A little helpas there are two paths for him this weekend.

Win with the fastest lap

In both scenarios, Verstappen needs to win and secure the full allocation of 25 potential points awarded to the winner. (Under current F1 scoring rules, points are awarded based on percentage of the race completed. Provided at least 75% of the race is completed, the full 25 points are awarded to the top finisher.)

From there, Verstappen needs to have driven the fastest lap during the race, which would earn him an additional point, bringing his Singapore Grand Prix total to 26.

Then I would need help. To secure the title from him, he would need Leclerc no higher than eighth and his Red Bull teammate no higher than fourth. In that scenario, Verstappen’s lead in qualifying would be insurmountable over the last five races.

In the races you have completed this season, Leclerc has not finished worse than sixth. He has withdrawn from three races this season: France, Azerbaijan and Spain. The last time the Singapore Grand Prix was held, Leclerc qualified on pole position and placed second.

Win without the fast lap

Under this scenario, Verstappen wins the Singapore Grand Prix but does not record the fastest lap during the event.

Provided Verstappen secures the full 25 points in this scenario, then he would need Leclerc to go no higher than ninth and Perez no higher than fourth. However, if his Red Bull team-mate records the fastest lap, securing that extra point, then Verstappen could only clinch the championship if Perez doesn’t finish higher than fifth.

If that sounds like a long shot, well, Verstappen acknowledged it. Speaking to ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix, Verstappen emphasized that he was more focused on winning the race this weekend than the bigger picture. “I don’t really think about [winning the championship this weekend]. It’s a pretty remote possibility. I just want to enjoy the weekend and of course try to win it.”

He added: “I need a lot of luck to make it happen here, so I don’t really count on it.”

Looking to the future

If Friday’s first practice session is any indication, Verstappen and Red Bull could have some work to do to make these scenarios a reality. Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton posted the fastest lap in opening practice followed by Verstappen, with Leclerc and Perez third and fourth respectively:

But Verstappen had an incident at Turn 16 at the end of practice, as he spun around a bit and needed to recover quickly to get back on track:

If neither of these scenarios comes to pass at the Singapore Grand Prix, Verstappen’s celebration would be put on hold until at least the following weekend, when the Japanese Grand Prix is ​​scheduled. However, Verstappen is almost assured of a championship at the end of the season. Even if Leclerc wins the remaining races, as long as Verstappen collects 48 points over the rest of the calendar, he will secure his second consecutive F1 title.


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