Japanese Grand Prix, Sunday
Just two weeks after taking victory in Singapore, Fernando Alonso delivered another magnificent performance to win today’s Japanese Grand Prix at the Fuji Speedway. Teammate Nelson Piquet also had a strong afternoon taking fourth place.
Both drivers enjoyed strong starts, gaining ground at the first corner with Fernando in second behind Robert Kubica, while Nelson joined him in the top eight. As the first round of pit-stops shook out, Fernando emerged in the lead of the race and Nelson rose through the field to run in 6th.
Fernando continued to lead the race, showing remarkable pace and consistency to build a lead of 13 seconds over Kubica ahead of his second pit-stop on lap 43 where he took the soft option tyres for his final stint. He held his advantage for the rest of the afternoon and comfortably retook the lead as the second round of pit-stops unfolded. Nelson also continued to make progress, rising to fourth after his second pit-stop, where he remained through to the finish.
After a second consecutive victory, the ING Renault F1 Team has strengthened its hold on fourth position in the constructors’ championship and will look to continue this rich vein of form into next weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix.
Fernando Alonso P1
“It’s still difficult to believe what we have done today! Winning in Singapore was unexpected, but we benefited from special conditions. Today we won again on a circuit that was not supposed to suit us. The team has really done a remarkable job to fight back this season and we are now the third strongest team. It’s unbelievable and I am extremely happy this evening. ”
Nelson Piquet P4
“I am very happy with this great result for the team. I had a bit of luck at the start, but after that the car handled really well, I was on the pace, and I just had to remain concentrated and keep pushing. The team is having a really strong end to the season and I hope that is going to continue.”
Flavio Briatore, Managing Director ING Renault F1 Team
“I am very happy as this is a superb result for the team, Fernando, Nelson and Renault. The victory is well deserved: Fernando and Nelson had great drives, our strategy worked wonderfully and after our difficult start to the season I want to thank all the members of the team for their efforts. We had said that we could come back to the top and we confirmed that here today.”
Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering
“Winning the last race was very welcome, but it’s much more satisfying to win here in two ways: firstly it was a more straightforward race that showed our true capability, and secondly because both cars achieved a good result today. Congratulations to the team and to both our drivers.”