Accident overshadows Hamilton’s victory at Japanese Grand Prix

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It was a subdued victory for Lewis Hamilton at the prematurely-ended Japanese Grand Prix this weekend, following an accident involving the Marussia driver Jules Bianchi.

The Mercedes driver secured his third successive win during the rain-hit race, which was cut short after Bianchi struck the recovery truck dealing with Adrian Sutil’s car from an earlier accident.

Hamilton used the Cinturato wet and intermediate tyres and the rainy conditions means that the hard and medium slick tyres nominated for the weekend were not used at all.

The race got underway behind the safety car and was stopped again, still under the safety car, on lap three. There was a second start 20 minutes later under the safety car once more – meaning that the drivers were obliged to use the full wet tyre, which is the case with any safety car start.

The track remained damp after the safety car came in on lap 10, requiring the use of intermediates for the majority of the race. When the rain fell harder, at the end of the race, some drivers made use of the final safety car period to change back to the Cinturato Blue full wet tyre.

Paul Hembery, motorsport director for Pirelli tyres, commented: “The Japanese Grand Prix was held under extremely tricky conditions, but obviously our main concern, along with that of the entire paddock, is the accident that halted the race involving Jules Bianchi and Marussia.”

Denna Bowman, Head Office

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