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Formula 1 news: Valtteri Bottas crashes out of the first practice during the Singapore Grand Prix

Valtteri Bottas crashes out of first practice at the Singapore Grand Prix after hitting the barriers on the Marina Bay street circuit

  • Valtteri Bottas crashed out of the first practice during the Singapore Grand Prix
  • The Finn hit the barriers at turn 19 of the Marina Bay street circuit
  • He is Brit Lewis Hamilton’s biggest challenger in the driver standings
  • Max Verstappen drove the fastest lap on Friday in the first practice session

Valtteri Bottas crashed out of the first practice for the Singapore Grand Prix.

Bottas, Lewis Hamilton’s closest challenger for this season’s championship, lost control of his Mercedes in turn 19 and hit the barriers.

Bottas was unharmed in the low-speed accident, but the Finn sustained serious damage to the front of his car.

Valtteri Bottas got a lift back to the pits after a crash in the first practice session in Singapore

Valtteri Bottas got a lift back to the pits after a crash in the first practice session in Singapore

The Finn hit the barriers at turn 19 of the Marina Bay street circuit in Singapore

The Finn hit the barriers at turn 19 of the Marina Bay street circuit in Singapore

The Finn hit the barriers at turn 19 of the Marina Bay street circuit in Singapore

The front of Bottas' car was severely damaged after the low speed crash in practice

The front of Bottas' car was severely damaged after the low speed crash in practice

The front of Bottas’ car was severely damaged after the slow speed crash in Singapore

The front of Bottas' Mercedes car has been seriously damaged after a crash on the Marina Bay Circuit

The front of Bottas' Mercedes car has been seriously damaged after a crash on the Marina Bay Circuit

The front of Bottas’ Mercedes car has been seriously damaged after a crash on the Marina Bay Circuit

The opening at the Marina Bay circuit was suspended to collect Bottas’ machine.

Hamilton is 63 points away from his Mercedes teammate in the standings with seven laps to go.

It remains to be seen whether the Finnish team can make the required changes to the car in time for the start of the second practice, starting at 1:30 PM BST.

After Bottas’ crash, Max Verstappen of Red Bull set the pace in the opening run.

Verstappen finished 0.167 seconds ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel with Hamilton third, six tenths of the pace.

Charles Leclerc arrived in Singapore as a driver in form after successive victories in Belgium and Italy.

But the Monegasque weekend got off to a disappointing start as a gearbox problem limited it to just a dozen laps.

The Finn's Mercedes was hoisted from the Marina Bay street circuit on Friday by a crane

The Finn's Mercedes was hoisted from the Marina Bay street circuit on Friday by a crane

The Finn’s Mercedes was hoisted from the Marina Bay street circuit on Friday by a crane

Bottas is 63 points behind Mercedes teammate and current world champion Lewis Hamilton

Bottas is 63 points behind Mercedes teammate and current world champion Lewis Hamilton

Bottas is 63 points behind Mercedes teammate and current world champion Lewis Hamilton

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