Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg have been quick to heap praise upon Mercedes after finishing over one second clear of the rest of the field during practice for the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka today.
Although Mercedes has been the dominant force within Formula 1 across the course of the 2014 season, it is looking particularly omnipotent in Japan this weekend, and has an outside chance of securing its maiden constructors’ championship.
Mercedes will win the teams’ title on Sunday if it can outscore Red Bull by 41 points on Sunday, which may be a tall order, but a one-two finish is certainly the target for the Silver Arrows.
Rosberg and Hamilton produced their normal trick of sharing the spoils on Friday, each finishing fastest in one session and second behind their teammate in the other. However, Hamilton is keeping one eye on the weather as typhoon Phanfone threatens to quite literally rain on F1’s parade this weekend.
“The gap changes from track to track between us and other cars but it looks pretty good so far this weekend,” Hamilton said. “To come here at one of the most demanding tracks for downforce and to be that competitive is fantastic. It’s amazing what this team has done.
“Qualifying is going to be very important as it’s quite difficult to overtake here. We don’t know what’s going to happen with the weather this weekend; it’s such a challenging circuit but we always come to the weekend prepared for everything. I just want to race.”
Rosberg was equally as enthusiastic about the weekend ahead, but still feels that there is plenty of work to be done to ensure that another race win is not lost at Suzuka.
“That was a very, very good day for us,” the German driver said. “Thank you to the team for this great car, we are very quick on one lap and also on high fuel levels. My long run was very good this afternoon, so I’m quite confident for a good race here.
“There is still a lot of work to do tonight to find the perfect balance for this great old school track. It was a real pleasure to drive this fantastic track here today. Also the atmosphere is great, lots of fans are here already and they are very enthusiastic.”