The German headed to the street circuit at Marina Bay as the strong favourite for victory at the start of the weekend but ended it with seemingly growing strain between himself and the Scuderia after another lacklustre result.
But it was an ice-cold night for Kiwi driver Brendon Hartley who made no impact from his lowly starting position to eventually finish 17th and out of the points again. Pierre (Gasly) was on my gearbox and Sergey was on my front wing.
Vettel was the first of the front-runners to pit on lap 14 of 61 and took on a set of Ultrasofts, compared to the Softs employed one lap later by Hamilton.
Vettel has been criticized for dropping points due to some poor tactical driving this season but there was little he could do looking on from the Ferrari garage after his vehicle suffered a radiator fluid leak midway through the second practice session.
Especially as Hamilton has no intention of easing up.
"I'm spent. It felt like the longest race of my life so I'm glad it's over", said Hamilton when interviewed on track after hugging his crew in celebration. I think it was more hard to make the tyres work but it was pretty straightforward since the start of the weekend.
This race had represented a chance for Vettel to eat into a championship lead that has widened due to on-track errors in Hungary, Germany and Italy, but the German said there was collective fault for this misstep. Verstappen said that he didn't want to take the risk on passing the Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport vehicle, plus saying he found it unfair how the slow cars didn't get out of the way for him. It's disappointing as we had high hopes for Singapore.
From there the positions remained unchanged, though Hamilton's four-second advantage was whittled away when he encountered lapped traffic mid-race.
It is looking increasingly like a repeat scenario for the Ferrari driver, who is in disappearing into Hamilton's slipstream.
Verstappen says that it was a shame he lost a place at the start, but praises the team for selecting a great strategy that helped him push back up to second place.
"We tried to be aggressive in the beginning and obviously it didn't work out, " Vettel said.
Verstappen was twitchy from the off after Vettel's swing past, informing his team, "The auto feels really good!"
Daniel Ricciardo was unable to explain why he could only manage sixth on the grid for the Singapore Grand Prix.