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Vettel wins in Japan, world title on hold

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WEBBER-SUZUKASUZUKA, Japan, October 13 – Sebastian Vettel won the Japanese Grand Prix Sunday but missed out on sealing his fourth successive world title as his nearest rival, Fernando Alonso, stayed just in touch by placing fourth.

Vettel, third from the first lap, drove a superb race to reel in his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber and Lotus’s Romain Grosjean, who were second and third, for his fifth straight victory.

But Ferrari’s Alonso kept the championship alive when he finished fourth to remain 80 points back from Vettel with 100 points available from the last four races.

Kimi Raikkonen and Nico Hulkenberg were fifth and sixth but the championship challenge of Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton ended when he retired early after a puncture at the start.

RESULTS

1. Sebastian Vettel (GER/Red Bull-Renault) 1hr 26min 49.301sec

2. Mark Webber (AUS/Red Bull-Renault) at 7.129

3. Romain Grosjean (FRA/Lotus-Renault) at 9.910

4. Fernando Alonso (ESP/Ferrari) at 45.605

5. Kimi Raikkonen (FIN/Lotus-Renault) at 47.325

6. Nico Hulkenberg (GER/Sauber-Ferrari) at 51.615

7. Esteban Gutierrez (MEX/Sauber-Ferrari) at 1:11.630

8. Nico Rosberg (GER/Mercedes) at 1:12.023

9. Jenson Button (GBR/McLaren-Mercedes) at 1:20.821

10. Felipe Massa (BRA/Ferrari) at 1:29.263

STANDINGS

Drivers

1. Sebastian Vettel (GER) 297 pts

2. Fernando Alonso (ESP) 207

3. Kimi Räikkönen (FIN) 177

4. Lewis Hamilton (GBR) 161

5. Mark Webber (AUS) 148

6. Nico Rosberg (GER) 126

7. Felipe Massa (BRA) 90

8. Romain Grosjean (FRA) 87

9. Jenson Button (GBR) 60

10. Nico Hülkenberg (GER) 39

Constructors

1. Red Bull Racing 445 pts

2. Scuderia Ferrari 297

3. Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team 287

4. Lotus 264

5. McLaren Mercedes 83

6. Force India 62

7. Sauber 45

8. Scuderia Toro Rosso 31

9. Williams 1

 

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