It’s not unusual to face extremes of weather in Japan: either very wet, or dramatically hot. We’ve seen both over the years during the Formula One Japanese Grand Prix—and quite a few conditions in between—so the race can prove a tough one.
In addition, it was torrential rain that led to the fatal crash of French racing driver Jules Bianchi at last year’s Japanese Grand Prix, and while there have been some showers during Thursday and Friday’s practice session for this year’s event, the outlook for the weekend is positive.
Only partly cloudy skies are expected at the Suzuka Circuit for the next two days, and temperatures should peak at 81 degrees F (27degrees C) on Sunday, the day of the race. Of course, the weather is a little unpredictable in Suzuka at this time of year so teams will need to be prepared.
There wasn’t much action during practice because of the rain. When the cars were out, Infiniti Red Bull Racing’s Daniil Kvyat proved quickest, though right behind him were the two Mercedes AMG drivers Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton. The tires being used were the mediums and full wets. For the race, tire supplier Pirelli has nominated its hard and medium compounds.
Going into tomorrow’s qualifying session and Sunday’s race, Hamilton leads the 2015 Drivers’ Championship with 252 points, with Rosberg in second with 211 points and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in third with 203 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes leads with 463 points, while Ferrari is second with 310 points and Williams third with 198 points.