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#JapaneseGP: Bottas fastest in final practice

2017-10-07 06:54

Image: AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Suzuka - Valtteri Bottas clocked the fastest lap in the final practice for the Japanese Formula One Grand Prix on Saturday, edging Mercedes teammate and championship leader Lewis Hamilton.

Bottas' time of 1 minute, 29.055 seconds was .014 faster than Hamilton in the last practice before qualifying later Saturday.

Qualifying at 8:00am (SA-time)

Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel was third-fastest followed by Red Bull duo Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo.

Vettel's Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen crashed late on but was unhurt.

With five races remaining, Hamilton leads Vettel by 34 points in the driver's championship.

Hamilton won at Suzuka in 2014 and 2015 and was second to former Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg last year.

Another win would move Hamilton a step closer to a third F1 title in four years with Mercedes and his fourth overall.

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