2022 F1 Japanese Grand Prix preview: A return to Suzuka


The Japanese Grand Prix returns to the Components 1 calendar this weekend after final working in 2019. The race, which serves as spherical 18 of the 2022 season, takes place on the iconic Suzuka Circuit, a circuit that is distinctive in that the observe structure types a determine eight.

Ask any driver to checklist their three favorite circuits, and virtually of them will embody this one. It was designed in 1962 by Dutch automotive and racetrack designer John Hugenholz, initially as a check observe for Honda, and innaugurated as an F1 circuit in 1987. It’s infamous for its excessive speeds and restricted runoff areas.

It is a circuit of two halves, stretching 3.6 miles in size and that includes nearly each attainable kind of nook, from excessive pace kinks to flowing linked turns and profiled curved bends and chicanes and hairpins. As such, it’s a troublesome problem for energy models which must ship throughout the complete energy spectrum with out sacrificing drivability and responsiveness.

Equally, drivers can by no means cease working as there is not a lot heavy braking and as talked about above, restricted runoff areas. It’s a observe the place discovering an excellent rhythm and having good aero stability are the keys to success. The observe can be fairly slim, making overtaking troublesome, so technique can be important.

Suzuka Circuit, home of the Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix - Photo credit: Getty Images

Suzuka Circuit, house of the Components 1 Japanese Grand Prix – Picture credit score: Getty Pictures

The observe floor can be among the many roughest and most abrasive of the 12 months, which implies tire put on and degradation is on the excessive facet. Because of this, Pirelli has nominated the tougher C1 because the White onerous, C2 because the Yellow medium, and C3 because the Crimson smooth for the weekend.

Suzuka is well-known for its variable climate, too, with typhoons attainable right now of 12 months. Friday’s follow session noticed some heavy rain, and the present forecast requires sunny situations for Saturday’s qualifying and presumably extra rain throughout Sunday’s race.

After Friday’s follow, Mercedes-Benz AMG’s George Russell was the quickest, forward of teammate Lewis Hamilton. Shut behind had been Crimson Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez, third and fourth quickest, respectively.

Going into the weekend, Verstappen leads the 2022 Drivers’ Championship with 341 factors. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc is second with 237 factors, and Perez is third with 235 factors. Within the Constructors’ Championship, Crimson Bull leads with 576 factors, versus the 439 of Ferrari and 373 of Mercedes. The winner of the 2019 Japanese Grand Prix was Valtteri Bottas, driving for Mercedes.


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