News in depth
Mercedes is closing on a new F1 history milestone after its fifth constructors' championship, and it's now among the all-time greats not just on statistical grounds but for the template it's set for how to create a modern F1 powerhouse.
The idea that Esteban Ocon deliberately hit Max Verstappen so Lewis Hamilton could win is madness. But this was still a race in which Verstappen had done everything right, and made clear to Mercedes how big a future title threat he is.
Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas topped the second Friday Formula 1 free practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos.
Max Verstappen's 2018 Formula 1 turnaround has been remarkable, to the extent that his performance level in the second half of the season is second only to Lewis Hamilton's. But there are still flaws he must eliminate if he's to challenge for a title.
Lewis Hamilton is now within touching distance of Michael Schumacher's record of seven world titles and 91 victories. The Briton could conceivably reach those totals before the end of his current Mercedes deal, but it may not be that simple.
In Mexico, a team that had recently slid back into a clear third-best, an engine supplier maligned all year long and a driver who had been accused of being out of control in the first part of the year completed controlled a very demanding race.
Red Bull pairing Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo dominated Friday afternoon practice for the Mexican Grand Prix, both lapping a second faster than the rest of the Formula 1 field.
After his latest error in the United States Grand Prix arguably cost Sebastian Vettel another race win, it's time he and his Ferrari team did some serious soul-searching and react to the problem that is stopping them winning Formula 1 titles.
Two drivers - at the head of the Class A and B order - earned perfect scores for near-flawless performances at Austin, while a charging drive and quietly impressive midfield performances were also rewarded with high marks.
Kimi Raikkonen's second stint at Ferrari has been characterised by dropping the ball at key moments and costing himself chances to win races. At Austin he passed every test to end a wait of more than 100 races to return to the top of the podium.
Sebastian Vettel claimed he was not concerned by rain at Austin because "If our car's quick, it will be quick when it's dry and when it's wet". That's bad news for Ferrari, which can no longer beat runaway F1 title favourite Mercedes in a straight fight.
Fernando Alonso says every race since he decided he would leave Formula 1 at the end of the season has been "a celebration" for him.
While Daniil Kvyat has been given a third shot at Formula 1 with his 2019 Toro Rosso drive, there's another driver working in the championship who arrived back for a third stint in grand prix racing this year with much less fanfare.
There's no question Mercedes now has the fastest car in Formula 1 again, and Lewis Hamilton is also in arguably his greatest form yet. But a run of unfathomably poor decisions by Ferrari at Suzuka made the title battle outcome even more obvious.