Mercedes driver Hamilton extended his advantage at the top of the standings to 67 points with his fourth successive race win and sixth in seven, with team-mate Valtteri Bottas taking second ahead of Red Bull's Max Verstappen. Valtteri Bottas held off Verstappen to take second nearly 13 seconds behind Hamilton in a breathless 53-lap race at the fast-flowing Japanese circuit.
Mercedes' British driver Lewis Hamilton is on the verge of winning his fifth world title. Having qualified in pole, Hamilton was jumped at the start by Vettel, but regained the lead on lap six before stretching his legs.
Hamilton could put Vettel out of his misery if he wins the next race at Austin in two weeks and Vettel finishes lower than second - or if he outscores the German by eight points.
"I hope you guys are not getting bored of this - because I'm definitely not". He was followed by Räikkönen and Vettel in fifth and sixth places, respectively.
That is the news from Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, after the Sochi-Suzuka double header in which Finn Bottas was clearly playing the "number 2" role in support of runaway championship leader Lewis Hamilton. "Austin is generally a good track for us and I can't wait to unleash this beast there", said Hamilton after leading every lap at Suzuka for his 71st career win. I don't regret the move, obviously with that outcome you would do it differently because with hindsight it's always easy.
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Guardiola acknowledged that his side had chosen to lower the tempo in the game to limit the potency of Liverpool's attack. Playmaker Kevin De Bruyne could make a surprise early return to action after returning to training earlier this week.
"We've gone from strength to strength as a team this year". Under-braking, Vettel barged into the side of Verstappen's Red Bull before spinning round in a flurry of sparks.
Verstappen was given a five second penalty for an incident with Raikkonen where he clashed with the Ferrari as he rejoined after running off at the chicane.
Even though Sebastian Vettel will probably be missing out on yet another title at Ferrari, the German has vowed to stay loyal to the prancing horse, saying he doesn't want to drive for any other team. It's been quite a few races for Sebastian Vettel, too, but for different reasons.
"If I don't go for that gap and that gap was there, I might as well go home". "I had the speed". "We touched a little bit but I really think it's ridiculous those five seconds".
Behind the pairings of Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari, Perez took seventh for Force India, Grosjean eighth for Haas, Ocon's Force India secured ninth and Sainz took the last points place in 10th.