Japanese Grand Prix 2019: What time does the F1 race start, what TV channel is it on and will it be affected by Typhoon Hagibis?

Telegraph Sport
The Telegraph
The 2019 Japanese Grand Prix takes place at Suzuka this weekend - Getty Images AsiaPac
The 2019 Japanese Grand Prix takes place at Suzuka this weekend - Getty Images AsiaPac

What is it?

The 2019 Japanese Grand Prix, the 17th race of the 2019 Formula One season. 

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When is it?

Well, weather permitting, the first two practice sessions take place on Friday October 11, qualifying runs on Saturday October 12 and the race itself is on Sunday October 12. 

What time does it start?

Again, if the weather is not too disruptive then qualifying starts at 7am BST but the race begins at 6.10am BST on Sunday. If the weather affects the schedule on Saturday, leading to postponement, then we could see qualifying take place very early on Sunday morning UK time, as has happened in the past before in Japan. 

Will it be affected by Typhoon Hagibis?

England's Rugby World Cup match against France has been cancelled because of Hagibis and there is a chance it will affect further games as well. It's no surprise, then, that it may affect Suzuka and the worst conditions are most likely to fall on Saturday. It's possible that conditions in Mie Prefecture will make it either unraceable or be so bad as to endanger the safety of attendees and other personnel. It may be or rescheduled beforehand in that case, so stay tuned for updates. A decision may be made by Friday lunchtime UK time. 

Early on Thursday morning the FIA posted an update which read: "Typhoon Hagibis The FIA, Formula 1, Suzuka Circuit and the Japanese Automobile Federation are closely monitoring Typhoon Hagibis and its potential impact on the 2019 FIA Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix."

"Every effort is being made to minimise disruption to the Formula 1 timetable, however the safety of the fans, competitors and everyone at the Suzuka Circuit remains the top priority. All parties will continue to monitor the situation and provide further updates in due course."

What TV channel is it on?

Again, this is all subject to change but Sky Sports F1 have exclusive coverage rights in the UK this year and indeed for the next few. Qualifying coverage begins at 6am BST and race coverage begins at 4.30am BST on Sunday.  

Channel 4 have highlights for this round, too. Their qualifying program begins at 1.30pm BST on Saturday with their race coverage starting at 2.20pm BST on Sunday. 

You can also keep up to date throughout the race with Luke Slater right here at Telegraph Sport.

Watch the Japanese Grand Prix through Now TV for £9.99.

What do we know about Suzuka?

  • Circuit length: 5.801km

  • First grand prix: 1987

  • Laps: 57

  • Race distance: 307.471km

  • Race lap record: 1.31.540 - Kimi Raikkonen, 2005

  • 2018 winner: Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes

  • Number of corners: 18

  • Overtaking chances: So, so really. The best chance is into the final hairpin and then maybe perhaps DRS-assisted onto the pit straight and (maybe) through the final corner. The hairpin is a place for a late lunge and into the fast double-left-hander at Spoon is a place for a really bold move.

What are the odds (top six)?

  • Lewis Hamilton 6/4

  • Charles Leclerc 2/1

  • Sebastian Vettel 7/2

  • Valtteri Bottas 7/1

  • Max Verstappen 8/1

  • Alexander Albon 125/1

What is our prediction?

A tough one, really. Ferrari have had the quickest car in qualifying for the past four races and in Russia last time out they matched Mercedes' race pace too. This all suggests they should be there or thereabouts and on a track like Suzuka the driver can make a real difference. So we could get a four, five or six way battle for pole position. Red Bull and Honda have been using their engine penalties to save them for Suzuka, which is a very important (and home) race for Honda. They may well be in the mix but I can't see them challenging the front row. So, I predict a Leclerc victory with Hamilton second. The two most in-form drivers at the moment. 


Podium prediction: 1st Leclerc 2nd Hamilton 3rd Verstappen

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