Stats of note heading into Suzuka


A few quick news and noteworthy items heading into the Japanese Grand Prix this weekend:

  • Lewis Hamilton has never won at Suzuka, one of only four current circuits on the calendar he hasn’t. The others? Austria, Russia, and Brazil – and of those three only Brazil has he had multiple Grands Prix. Hamilton won at Fuji in 2007. A third place in 2009 marks his only podium here.
  • Nico Rosberg has never finished on the podium in Japan. A fifth in 2009, with Williams, marks his best result at the track.
  • This will be the 26th Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka.
  • Sebastian Vettel has won four of the last five Japanese Grands Prix at Suzuka since the race returned in 2009, which mirrors the best run of results achieved here by countryman Michael Schumacher, who also won four of five from 2000 through 2004.
  • Schumacher’s 2004 win is the last win by Ferrari at this circuit.
  • Since 1994, over the last 20 years, Schumacher (six) and Vettel (four) have half the Japanese Grand Prix victories.

More here from the official Formula One website.

IndyCar disappointed by delay of video game but aiming to launch at start of 2024

IndyCar video game 2024

An IndyCar executive said there is “absolutely” disappointment that its long-awaited video game recently was delayed beyond its target date, but the series remains optimistic about the new title.

“Well, I don’t know how quick it will be, but the whole situation is important to us,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said during a news conference Monday morning to announce IndyCar’s NTT title sponsorship. “Motorsport Games has spent a lot of money, a lot of effort to create an IndyCar title. What we’ve seen of that effort, which is not completely obvious, is very reassuring.

“I think it’s going to be outstanding. That’s our shared objective, that when it is released, it’s just widely accepted. A great credit both to IndyCar racing, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, something that our fans love.”

In June 2021, IndyCar announced a new partnership with Motorsport Games to create and distribute an IndyCar video game for the PC and Xbox and PlayStation consoles in 2023.

But during an earnings call last week, Motorsport Games said the IndyCar game had been delayed to 2024 to ensure high quality.

Somewhat compounding the delay is that IndyCar’s license for iRacing expired after the end of the 2022 season because of its exclusive agreement with Motorsport Games.

That’s resulted in significant changes for IndyCar on iRacing, which had provided a high-profile way for the series to stay visible during its 2020 shutdown from the pandemic. (Players still can race an unbranded car but don’t race on current IndyCar tracks, nor can they stream).

That’s helped ratchet up the attention on having a video game outlet for IndyCar.

“I wish we had an IndyCar title 10 years ago,” said Miles, who has been working with the organization since 2013. “We’ve been close, but we’ve had these I think speed bumps.”

IndyCar is hopeful the Motorsports Game edition will be ready at the start of 2024. Miles hinted that beta versions could be unveiled to reporters ahead of the time “to begin to show the progress in a narrow way to make sure we’ve got it right, to test the progress so that we’re ready when they’re ready.”

It’s been nearly 18 years since the release of the most recent IndyCar video game for console or PC.

“(We) better get it right,” Miles said. “It’s something we’re very close to and continue to think about what it is to make sure we get it over the line in due course.”