Valtteri Bottas won the Japanese Grand Prix on Sunday to help Mercedes land their sixth consecutive Constructors’ Championship. Bottas, who hadn’t tasted victory since the Azerbaijan GP at the end of April, started Sunday’s race at Suzuka third on the grid after the Ferrari pair of Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc had locked out the front row.
However, the Finn produced a brilliant performance to surpass the Scuderia duo and clinch his sixth F1 victory and his third of the season, leaving him second in the Drivers’ Championship on 274 points. Vettel did take second place for Ferrari but with Lewis Hamilton ending up in third for Mercedes, and Leclerc down in sixth, the Silver Arrows have been crowned constructors’ champions for the sixth straight year.
The Brackley-based outfit have now matched Ferrari’s all-time record of consecutive team titles from 1999-2004 and Hamilton expressed his delight at the achievement. “There’s been so much hard work over the year and the last seven years,” he told the media. “The team have done an amazing job and I’m really proud to be part of it and able to contribute… I hope everyone is having some champagne today.”
With championship leader Hamilton and team-mate Bottas the only two drivers that can win the world title, Mercedes have set a new Formula 1 record of a sixth consecutive world championship double. British star Hamilton’s lead stands at 64 points and he looks destined to win a sixth world crown with just four races remaining.