Sebastian Vettel Triumphs at Suzuka Grand Prix
It is both his third win of the season and his third win at Suzuka, in the last four races he attended there. He was followed by Ferrari’s Felipe Massa and Sauber-Ferrari driver, Kamui Kobayashi. For Massa, it was the best performance and first podium of the season.
However, things didn’t go particularly smoothly at the start of the race, as in the first corner, Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari came together with Kimi Raikkonen’s Lotus, sending the Spanish driver into the gravel. For Nico Rosberg, the race was also cut short in the same corner by an accident with Bruno Senna, which earned the latter a drive-through penalty.
There was more uncertainty to follow in the second corner, as Romain Grosjean crashed into the back of Mark Webber’s car, and while neither car was terminally damaged, Grosjean did get a 10-second stop-and-go penalty.
As the race drew to a close, Vettel was able to build up a 20 second lead, comfortably cruising ahead. Now, following Massa and Kobayashi, Jenson Button came in 4th place, Hamilton finished 5th, while Kimi Raikkonen managed to hold onto 6th place until the end of the race.
Seventh place was taken by Nico Hulkenberg, followed by Pastor Maldonado, Mark Webber (who never managed to recover from the early crash) and the last to get a point, Daniel Ricciardo.
Despite not finishing the race, Alonsi is still first in the standings, with 194 points, yet Sebastian Vettel is closing in, and is just four points behind now. Kimi Raikkonen’s mediocre finish maintains him in third place, followed by Lewis Hamilton.
In the constructors’ standings, Red Bull has a comfortable lead, with a total of 324 points, to McLaren’s 283 and Ferrari’s 263. Next weekend’s Koran Grand Prix may mark a modification in the top spot of the drivers’ standings, if Fernando Alonso doesn’t do extremely well, as Vettel seems to be in peak form.