Victory for Bottas in Japan, sixth in a row championship title for Mercedes
Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) scored his third win of the season and sixth Formula 1 victory in a career today at Suzuka Circuit by winning the Japanese Grand Prix, the 17th round of the 2019 F1 World Championship.
Sebastian Vettel (Scuderia Ferrari) and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) climbed to the podium next to Bottas. Such a result secured the sixth consecutive championship title for Mercedes with four more races on the schedule. Mercedes matched Ferrari’s record from 1999-2004. It also became a mathematical certainty that one of either Bottas or Hamilton will be crowned drivers’ champions this season, ensuring the teams’ sixth straight double championship, a new record.
The Japanese Grand Prix weekend has been affected by the Typhoon Hagibis on Saturday, forcing the organizers to have a Qualifying session on Sunday morning. Ferrari duo of Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc occupied the front row but Valtteri Bottas was the fastest starter from the third place on the grid, taking the lead before Turn 1 and staying in the control of the race until the end. Behind Valtteri’s back, Vettel and Hamilton fought for the second place, with German driver crossing the finish line just 0.4 seconds ahead.
Red Bull’s Alex Albon recorded his best result in a career by finishing fourth, in front of McLaren’s Carlos Sainz Jr. Charles Leclerc crossed the finish line sixth but the post-race penalty demoted him to P7. He was penalized because he was found guilty for the contact with Max Verstappen on the opening lap. One more penalty was given to him because of driving in unsafe condition after a piece from his damaged Ferrari hit Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes.
Leclerc’s penalty promoted Daniel Ricciardo (Renault) to P6. The other point scorers are Pierre Gasly (8th, Toro Rosso), Sergio Perez (9th, Racing Point) and Nico Hulkenberg (10th, Renault).