Written by Jamie Downes (@JamieDownes11)
Valteri Bottas took a commanding victory in Japan, as Mercedes secured a record sixth Constructors World Championship at Suzuka.
The Finn, who leapfrogged Sebastian Vettel at the start after the German made a poor getaway, was never really challenged during the race, which came mere hours after qualifying on account of the threat caused by Typhoon Hagibis.
Bottas’ teammate Lewis Hamilton was a frustrating third, despite catching Vettel with laps to go and on fresher tyres. However the straight line speed of the Ferrari meant Hamilton couldn’t find a way past in the closing laps.
Silver Arrows celebrate history
Mercedes clinched their record sixth consecutive constructors title at Suzuka, surely cementing their place as one of the greatest teams in the history of the sport. Team Principal Toto Wolff dedicated the title to Niki Lauda. The legendary Austrian died earlier this year after battling an illness. Wolff remarked “Niki would have said congratulations for the sixth ones, you have a problem for next year”.
— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) October 13, 2019
The Silver Arrows, by comparison quite a new team in formula one, despite their roots in the 1950’s and Juan Manuel Fangio, have set a level of dominance that can only be matched by teams like Ferrari under Michael Schumacher in the early 2000’s, and the legendary partnership of McLaren-Honda and Ayrton Senna and Alan Prost in the late 1980’s. Mercedes are almost certainly the standout dominant team of the Turbo Hybrid era.
Ferrari blow it again
Despite their utterly dominant performance in qualifying, Ferrari reverted to their default state in the race, and managed to throw away a very strong position. Sebastian Vettel got a very poor getaway that allowed him to be leapfrogged by Bottas, and his teammate Charles Leclerc shunted off the Red Bull of Max Verstappen on the opening lap, which resulted in the Dutchman retiring from the race later on because of the damage.
— Scuderia Ferrari (@ScuderiaFerrari) October 13, 2019
With the pace their car possesses, it can only be imagined what the championship fight would look like if Ferrari ironed out their teamwork problems from the first race in Australia. Lewis Hamilton would certainly not be looking so comfortable.
The next race is in Mexico in 2 weeks. For coverage from Mexico City, and for all things F1, Nerve Sport is the place to be.