The enthusiasm of the Japanese F1 and Motorsport fans is truly incredible !
Once again this weekend, the sights and sounds in the grandstands and around the track were amazing.
From Friday to Sunday, 165,000 people turned up, which is an increase of 18,000 over the previous year.
That’s gratifying for the promoter who worked so hard to provide various forms of entertainment for the fans in this the 30th year that Formula 1 has raced at this track.
There was also a great display on track from a number of historic F1 cars and I was particularly pleased to see, admittedly only on video, the Ferrari 248F1, the last car from when I was in charge of the technical side in Maranello.
Some of these cars were driven by their current owners, while others were reunited with those who raced them, such as Mika Häkkinen and Felipe Massa.
It’s therefore very pleasing that a new three year agreement with the local promoter will see this race remain an important addition on the Formula One calendar.
Max Verstappen -
He collided with Kimi Räikkönen -
A few laps later and it was time for another incident, this time with Vettel -
Regardless, Max demonstrated that, at this track, the Red Bull could fight Ferrari and the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas on equal terms. Indeed, the Dutchman chased Bottas for second place right up until the final lap, even if he never really had a genuine passing opportunity.
In the other Red Bull, Daniel Ricciardo also put on a great show, with the Australian finishing just off the podium having started from 15th place on the grid. It was yet another great climb up the order, following both his and Verstappen’s in Sochi.
Red Bull are no doubt lamenting the reliability problems they are having with Renault, as a relationship that brought so much success and glory to the Milton Keynes-
Lewis Hamilton composed his ninth symphony in Suzuka. This latest win for the Englishman, his fifth from the last six race means he could win the Championship at the next round in Austin on 21st October.
Back in the summer break, I doubt Lewis or his team believed they could do that so soon. Back-
From Hockenheim to date, Lewis has picked up 168 points out of a possible maximum of 175, while his title rival has only managed 93. On some weekends, Hamilton was note perfect, while on others the team helped him out, as was the case in Sochi, or they simply benefited from the mistakes of others. It that means that he has a 67-
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