How Ricciardo predicted crazy Vettel crash

Daniel Ricciardo actually joked pre-race that Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen would take each other out in the Singapore Grand Prix.

Pole-sitter Vettel and his Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen both crashed out as the rain-hit night race got off to a chaotic start on Sunday.

Raikkonen ploughed into Red Bull's Verstappen on the first corner, taking both cars out of the race and also dealing a heavy hit to Fernando Alonso's McLaren.

Carnage. Image: Getty

The collision knocked all three of the fierce rivals - who have plenty of history from previous controversial encounters this season - out of contention at the Marina Bay Street Circuit, leaving Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton, the Formula One drivers' world championship leader, free to record an important victory.

"I think mainly Sebastian started squeezing me," Verstappen told Sky Sports F1. "Maybe he didn't see Kimi on the left but that's not an excuse.

"If you are fighting for the world championship you shouldn't take those risks, squeezing someone that much. You can see what happens. Lewis is leading the race and the three of us are out."

Ricciardo made the most of his rivals' absences, ending up on the podium in second spot but unable to catch Hamilton.

Ironically, the Aussie had joked just 24 hours earlier that the only way he was going to come first was if Vettel and Verstappen (who qualified fastest and second fastest) wiped each other out.

“I watched the chaos unfold in front of me," Ricciardo said.

"It was probably good that I had a bad start.

“It gave me time to see what would happen.”

Formula One next heads to Malaysia, where Ricciardo led Verstappen in a one-two last year.

Vettel and Ricciardo. Image: Getty

But while Red Bull, who had been expected to be Mercedes' closest challengers this season, have made progress after a slow start to the year, Ricciardo feels the form they showed in Singapore is a one-off for now.

The 28-year-old, who scored the team's most recent triumph at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in June, remains confident however of scoring at least one more victory before the season ends in Abu Dhabi in six races' time.

"I think we can be podium cars, probably Malaysia, Japan, Austin," said Ricciardo.

"But yeah, we might need some alternate conditions to really give us raw pace to fight for a win."

with AAP