Our F1 scribe takes a look at what may happen out in Suzuka on Sunday the 13th of October.
It’s not the Rugby World Cup that is being affected by approaching Typhoon Hagibis with the Japanese Grand Prix also in danger of being cancelled due to the approaching category 5 storm that will make landfall in Japan on Saturday morning.
As it stands, the FIA has released a statement that the main Grand Prix will be staged at the scheduled time but Qualifying and the practice sessions could well be moved to different time slots or cancelled altogether.
2019 Japanese Grand Prix
Suzuka International Racing Circuit
Sunday 13 October
To Win Race Outright
Lewis Hamilton 27/20
Charles LeClerc 2/1
Sebastian Vettel 9/2
Max Verstappen 13/2
Valterri Bottas 8/1
Alexander Albion 125/1
The status-quo was once again restored out in Sochi with Mercedes claiming a one-two finish and Lewis Hamilton reigning supreme.
While it was a great day for Mercedes, their arch-rivals over at Ferrari had a bit of a mixed-bag with Sebastian Vettel being forced to retire with a power unit issue. Vettel’s retirement brought about a safety car that effectively ended his teammate’s, Charles LeClerc, chances of winning the race with the rookie having to settle for third place.
It was a decent enough day for Red Bull with Max Verstappen claiming fourth and Alexander Albion claiming fifth. The top six was rounded out by the McLaren of Carlos Sainz.
Sainz and teammate Lando Norris – who finished eighth – had the Racing Point of Sergion Perz sandwiched between them in seventh, while Kevin Magnussen (Ninth) and Lance Stroll (10th) rounded out the points scoring positions.
Suzuka is one of the most challenging tracks on the Formula 1 circuit. Drivers will fight it out over 53 gruelling laps, with each lap spanning a distance of 5.608km and containing 19 corners.
While the 130R sequence is one of the trickiest to negotiate on the F1 calendar, it’s not the only set of corners that could give drivers a few hassles, however, as the Dunlop Curve turn is also a treacherous one to navigate – this was the corner that tragically claimed the life of Jules Bianchi three years ago.
In terms of the weather forecast, there’s a category 5 typhoon headed to Japan so we can expect a lot of rain and wind, and even a possible flying tree.
Last year’s race was won by Lewis Hamilton with Valterri Bottas completing the very familiar Mercedes one-two by bringing his car home in second. The podium was rounded out by Max Verstappen.
Podium Finish – Kimi Raikonnen – Yes @ 250/1
This is an absolute speculator but with shocking weather being forecast and the Finn at 250/1 to land on the podium, I simply cannot help but stick R10 on this market.
The former Ferrari ace has a tidy record at the track finishing in the top six at all four of the last events held in Japan. He also took third-place at Suzuka in 2016.
To Win Race Outright
Lewis Hamilton @ 27/20
I cannot overlook the ‘Brit here. He has a very healthy record at the track having won five Grand Prix at Suzuka which includes four of the last five events staged at the circuit.
The wet weather will also suit Mercedes set up and diminish the crazy pace that the Ferraris have been setting post the mid-season break.
Written by Darry Worthington for Hollywoodbets