Japanese Grand Prix betting and odds update as Lewis Hamilton claims pole at Suzuka

Lewis Hamilton secured pole at Suzuka
Lewis Hamilton secured pole at Suzuka

Lewis Hamilton is a hot 1/3 favourite for the Japanese Grand Prix after cruising to his 71st career pole at Suzuka.

Japanese Grand Prix: Qualifying top four

  1. Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1min 27.319secs
  2. Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 1:27.651
  3. Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 1:27.791
  4. Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull 1:28.306

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Qualifying report & odds update

Lewis Hamilton stormed to pole position for the Japanese Grand Prix as title rival Sebastian Vettel could not get close to the Mercedes.

After out-scoring Vettel with an under-performing car in the last two races, Mercedes were back to their dominant best at Suzuka.

Hamilton's record 71st pole position was never in doubt and he will be joined on the front-row by the Ferrari of Vettel - who was third fastest but moves up after the second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas was hit with a grid penalty.

This was Hamilton's maiden pole position at Suzuka, his other two Japanese Grand Prix poles coming at Fuji.

But he has won here twice in the past and is now just 1/3 to make it a hat-trick of victories on Sunday and take another huge step towards a fourth world championship; he's 1/10 for title glory.

Vettel is out to 11/4 for victory here with Daniel Ricciardo and Bottas both 16/1 shots.

Hamilton clocked a time of one minute 27.319 seconds to breeze to pole, with Bottas getting closest.

The Finn takes a five-place penalty for an unscheduled gearbox change so at least Vettel will be alongside Hamilton at the start as he looks to close the 34-point gap in the championship standings.

The Red Bull pair of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen will occupy the second row, while Esteban Ocon benefitted from Kimi Raikkonen's own gearbox change penalty and will start fifth.

Bottas is now sixth ahead of the second Force India of Sergio Perez, while Felipe Massa's Williams, the McLaren and Stoffel Vandoorne and Renault's Nico Hulkenberg also start inside the top 10.

That is because Raikkonen could only manage the sixth-fastest time and so will drop to 11th, while Fernando Alonso reached Q3 but will start from the back after his own 35-place penalty.

The first qualifying session was cut short by a red flag after Romain Grosjean crashed his Haas at turn five.

Japanese Grand Prix: Qualifying times

  1. Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1min 27.319secs
  2. Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 1:27.651
  3. Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 1:27.791
  4. Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull 1:28.306
  5. Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 1:28.332
  6. Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 1:28.498
  7. Esteban Ocon (Fra) Force India 1:29.111
  8. Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India 1:29.260
  9. Felipe Massa (Bra) Williams 1:29.480
  10. Fernando Alonso (Spa) McLaren 1:30.687
  11. Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) McLaren 1:29.778
  12. Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault 1:29.879
  13. Kevin Magnussen (Den) Haas F1 1:29.972
  14. Jolyon Palmer (Gbr) Renault 1:30.022
  15. Carlos Sainz (Spa) Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:30.413
  16. Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas F1 1:30.849
  17. Pierre Gasly (Fra) Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:31.317
  18. Lance Stroll (Can) Williams 1:31.409
  19. Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Sauber-Ferrari 1:31.597
  20. Pascal Wehrlein (Ger) Sauber-Ferrari 1:31.885

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