2013 Japan Thoughts
THE BIG PICTURE: The championship may be effectively over, but there are still a few races left to enjoy the V8 era.
EVENT: Dear Korea, you should take a lesson from your historical archenemies, Japan, to learn how to properly stage a Grand Prix, create atmosphere, and build racing fans amongst your populace.
QUALIFYING: Webber takes advantage of his teammate's KERS problems, Lotus does not, Grosjean outdoes Raikkonen again, and Massa outdoes Alonso again.
RACE: It came down to strategy, becoming a nail biter.
TRACK: While always praising the best European tracks, we often forget how great of a challenge Suzuka is.
START: Grosjean rockets through and doesn't crash, Hamilton rockets through but gets touched, Webber flubs it but stays ahead of Vettel, and two back makers go bang.
VETTEL: Sebastian had to work for this one. But, once again, when the pressure is on, he seems to have trouble handling it.
WEBBER: Once again (willingly or not), Mark played the Red Bull lackey.
RED BULL: Start working on your 2014 car. Your work here is done.
GROSJEAN: What a difference a year makes. Romain is not only showing his promise, he's becoming a bona fide contender and soon to be number one team driver.
RAIKKONEN: Kimi pulled the move of the race, again, but he's got to start qualifying better.
LOTUS: Sign Hulkenberg, now. Now! NOW!
ALONSO: Yeoman work, again. Falling further behind, again.
MASSA: Felipe finally grows a set and ignores team orders. Like it makes any difference now...
FERRARI: Start working on your 2014 car. Your (non) work here is done.
HULKENBERG: If Nico does not end up with a decent ride next year, then Formula 1 is an outright criminal organization. Outright criminal.
GUTIERREZ: Excellent race for Esteban. Fast, aggressive, and tough.
SAUBER: The Swiss team sure loves Japan. They have scored points in the last 20 Japanese Grands Prix.
ROSBERG: Foiled by your own impatience. Then tried to deflect the pit stop error by blasting Perez in a later incident.
HAMILTON: Oh, what might have been...
MERCEDES: Will Brawn be sticking around?
DI RESTA: Hey, he finished...
PEREZ: The scorn of his fellow drivers, deserved or not.
WILLIAMS: To be a fly on the wall for that post race debrief.
VAN DER GARDE: Not much was made of the first lap crash, but Giedo hit very hard when he went off. Luckily, he was unharmed.
DE VILLOTA: Remember the title of Maria's autobiography. Life is a Gift.
WORD OF THE WEEKEND: Almost.
STAT OF THE WEEKEND: 5 -- Vettel wins five consecutive grands prix for the first time in his career, in the last five Japanese Grands Prix, Vettel has won four, and the magic position to clinch the world championship is fifth.
HISTORICAL STAT OF THE WEEKEND: Everybody knows what happened during the first Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji in 1976 -- it's now depicted in the movie Rush. The next year, James Hunt won the race while Niki Lauda did not compete in it, having already clinched the world championship and his relationship with Ferrari souring. That also ended the brief two-year run for the Japanese GP before returning in 1987 at Suzuka.
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: Romain Grosjean on his lightning start, "When I let go of the clutch pedal, I thought, whoa-whoa, let's go for it."
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND RUNNERUP: Nico Rosberg with a touch of sarcasm on his encounter with Perez, "It worked out perfectly because he broke his tire and I got through."
SCHEDULE: Will anyone besides Vettel ever lead a lap at India?
Copyright © 2013 by Deep Throttle. All Rights Reserved.