Race Preview

Round 16 of the 2012 Formula One championship sees the teams make a relatively short journey from Suzuka across to the South Korean port city of Mokpo and the nearby Korean International Circuit.

Vettel wins in Japan

Sebastian Vettel took pole, fastest lap and a lights-to-flag victory at Suzuka.
The win, Vettel’s third in four years at Suzuka, leaves him just four points adrift in the Drivers’ Championship after Fernando Alonso crashed out of the race at the first corner. Vettel was followed to the chequered flag by Ferrari’s Felipe Massa, who took his first podium in two years, and Kamui Kobayashi. The third place for the Sauber driver was his first podium, and made him the first Japanese driver to stand on the F1 podium here since Aguri Suzuki in 1990.

Red Bulls rampant

Sebastian Vettel took a dominant pole position at Suzuka and Mark Webber was second as Red Bull recorded their first front-row lockout since last year’s Brazilian Grand Prix.
After topping the timesheet in the final free practice session on Saturday morning, Vettel set about confirming his dominance in qualifying. He was content with a single run in Q1, and another in Q2. His first effort in Q3 set the benchmark of 1:30.839. It was not bettered and he duly collected his fourth consecutive pole at Suzuka. 

Vettel surges ahead in FP3

Sebastian Vettel did his chances of claiming a fourth consecutive Japanese Grand Prix pole position no harm this morning with a convincing run to the top of the timesheet in the final free practice session ahead of qualifying at Suzuka.

McLaren and Red Bull lead the way

Jenson Button went fastest in FP1 but Mark Webber claimed top spot in the afternoon.

Race Preview

After the bright lights of the Singapore Grand Prix and a win for Sebastian Vettel that reignites the defending champion’s challenge for the 2012 drivers’ title, Formula One continues its Far-Eastern trek with a visit to one of the sport’s truly classic circuits – Suzuka in Japan. 

Vettel shines in Singapore

Sebastian Vettel prospered from Lewis Hamilton’s mechanical failure, to record his second victory of the season.
The Red Bull Racing driver led over the line from Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso. As a result Vettel rises from fourth in the Drivers’ Championship standings to second place. Kimi Räikkönen remains third after finishing the Singapore Grand Prix in sixth position.

Hamilton takes pole in Singapore

Lewis Hamilton took a surprisingly dominant pole position as Sebastian Vettel had to settle for third.
It was the McLaren driver’s 24th career pole, though Vettel had been heavily favoured, having finished top of the timesheets in each of the three practice sessions. The Red Bull driver, however, had no answer to Hamilton in Q3, and was over half a second off the pace. The reigning World Champion was even pushed back to third by the charging Williams of Pastor Maldonado. 

Three in a row for Vettel

Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel extended his run of fastest laps, finishing FP3 top of the timesheets.
Have gone fastest in both FP1 and FP2 on Friday, the World Champion extended his run with the fastest lap of Marina Bay in FP3 also – but the session was halted with two minutes left on the clock and faster times likely to follow. The red flags were brought out after Caterham’s Vitaly Petrov hit the wall approaching the final corner, scattering debris across the circuit. 

Vettel again

Sebastian Vettel made it a clean sweep on Friday, going fastest in FP2.
Having dominated the 2011 Singapore Grand Prix, Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel picked up where he left off, setting the fastest lap of FP1. He continued his form in the later session, staying at the top of the time sheet, but downplayed the achievement afterwards: “It’s still Friday and today’s results are not so conclusive as some drivers got stuck in traffic etc. Most important is that the car seemed to work on either tyre,” he said.