Lewis Hamilton is well on his way to earning his fourth straight victory in Formula One competition. Hamilton, was fastest in all three practice sessions around the 3.608-mile Suzuka circuit in Japan this weekend and is showing that he’s the class of the field. He also earned the pole for Sunday’s race as well.
Hamilton, enters this weekend with a 50 point advantage over Sebastian Vettel in the points standings and hasn’t finished worse than second since July 1.
In terms of the Japanese Grand Prix, Hamilton has won three of the last four years and was third in the other.
Want to pick against him for Sunday’s 53 Lap race?
Didn’t think so.
Vettel, hasn’t finished better than third since his win at Belgium on Aug. 26 and has just two top two finishes since the German Grand Prix. In Japan, he has four wins but none since 2013. In fact, since that win, his best finish in his last four races in Japan was third.
He was a DNF last year.
Unfortunately, due to a wrong tire choice by Ferrari in Q3 on Saturday, Vettel will start Sunday’s race in eighth.
Between Hamilton and Vettel, they’ve won seven of the last nine Japanese Grand Prix’s, all since F1’s return to Suzuka in 2009.
Mercedes, Hamilton’s team, has won each of the last four years in this very race. With Hamilton being so good and Vettel being a bit off, this is Hamilton’s race to lose.
If he does, Valtteri Bottas will be there to pick up where he left off. He was second in each of the two sessions on Friday and finished second to his teammate Hamilton last weekend. He rolls off second in the race on Sunday. The only problem is that he’s never finished on the podium in Japan.
Kimi Raikkonen was only fourth and fifth fastest respectively on Friday and third on Saturday and will start fourth while Daniel Ricciardo (3,6,6) and his Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen (6,4,4) were next best.