F1 Japanese Grand Prix Feed
Sebastian Vettel raced into the history books at Suzuka on Sunday in front of thousands of passionate Japanese fans. Here's the story of their race weekend in pictures...
'All in a day's work' – Sebastian Vettel 10/10/2010
by Sebastian Vettel
Sebastian Vettel enjoyed a day of firsts as he secured pole position, victory and won the Japanese Grand Prix for a second time. He tells us all about it in his latest blog...
Webber on the Five-Horse F1 title Race 8/10/2010
Several newspapers are reporting that Mark Webber is claiming he’s the underdog to lift the F1 drivers’ title. This is what Mark really said in his Suzuka press conference… but first he gives us his...
- Oyama, Japan
- 8/10/2011 at 12:00 AM
- 9/10/2011 at 11:00 PM
The first Japanese Grand Prix was held in 1976 at the Fuji Speedway, 40 miles west of Yokohama. The race featured the title decider between James Hunt and Niki Lauda run in monsoon conditions. Lauda, who had not long returned after his near fatal accident at the German Grand Prix earlier in the year, withdrew from the race saying his life was more important than the championship. Hunt finished third to take the championship by a single point.
He won the race the following year, but the event was marked by tragedy. Gilles Villeneuve and Ronnie Peterson collided, sending Villeneuve's Ferrari somersaulting into a restricted area, killing two spectators. Following this the race was absent from the calendar for a decade.
F1 returned to Japan in 1987 at a new venue, the Suzuka circuit south west of Nagoya. Formerly used as a test track by Honda, Suzuka is the only figure-of-eight circuit on the calendar. The new venue saw yet another title decider, but Nigel Mansell was injured after crashing his Williams in practice, therefore ruling himself out of the race, allowing his team mate Nelson Piquet to win the title.
In late 2006 it was announced that the event would return to the newly redesigned Fuji Speedway the following year - Fuji held the event in 2007 and 2008 but then it was decided that the race should alternate between the two tracks. However, in 2009 Fuji's owners Toyota decided they could no longer afford to host another grand prix due to the global economic crisis. The race enjoyed a much-celebrated return to Suzuka, a circuit that has always been popular with drivers, teams and spectators alike.
The Grand Prix of Japan will bring some badly needed funding and an economical boost to the country, in the wake of the utter devastation it suffered earlier this year.