Japanese GP Arrows preview

Back in its traditional spot on the calendar, Suzuka has been the battle ground for many championship clinching races over the years. Although this year's Championship was decided in Hungary, the wrap up to the season is sure to end on a ...

Back in its traditional spot on the calendar, Suzuka has been the battle ground for many championship clinching races over the years. Although this year's Championship was decided in Hungary, the wrap up to the season is sure to end on a high!

Suzuka is a fast and particularly technical circuit. With a good combination of fast corners and slow turns mixed with tight hairpins, the track requires 100% concentration throughout each lap. Unique for its 'figure of eight' configuration, it has a crossover and corners such as Spoon Curve and 130R, which are rated as some of the most demanding in F1.

The OrangeArrows team had a somewhat frustrating race at Suzuka last year. Saturday's qualifying session finished with the Pedro and Jos in 13th and 14th positions respectively. A slightly disappointing result as both Jos and Pedro felt they could have got more from the car. In the race, true to form, Jos made a great start overtaking four cars on the first lap. Luck was not on his side, however, as he retired on lap nine with electrical problems. Pedro, meanwhile, was struggling with understeer making the track particularly difficult to negotiate. A change of nose on his car gave him a better wing setting but it was too late to challenge for points. Settling for 12th place was not the end of the season the team had hoped for, but the OrangeArrows team will be aiming to end this season on a brighter note.

Jos Verstappen
"I really like Suzuka. It's a great track and has some really good corners. 130R is a real challenge as you can take it almost flat out and the other quick corners like the 'S' curves are a lot of fun. It's a very challenging circuit for drivers so you need to make sure you're focused all the time as you can't aford to make a mistake anywhere. Last year was quite disappointing for me as I had to retire early on in the race. Hopefully I can get another good start and who knows where we will be!"

Enrique Bernoldi
"It will be my first time at Suzuka as I've never raced there before, but I know of the circuit and it looks quite challenging. There are some corners, like 130R, that look like they will be a real test of nerves, a bit like Eau Rouge at Spa, so I'm looking forward to getting in the car and learning the track. Obviously it's the last race of the season and will I do my best, so I hope I can finish the season on a positive note for the team."

Mike Coughlan, Technical Director
"Suzuka is a demanding track on both car and driver. The 'S' Curves are particularly tough as it is almost impossible to take a breath when going through them due to the combination of high speed turns. The high speed corners do seem to suit our car so we'll be hoping for a good showing. I know that Jos likes the track and has driven there a lot. It will be interesting to see how Enrique goes as he hasn't raced at Suzuka before. It was the same case for Indianapolis though and it didn't cause him any problems there."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jos Verstappen , Enrique Bernoldi